The Moan Tax

I pay for every blessing—don’t think I don’t.
Sure I’ve got a good job, but I work too hard,
And I’m lucky in love, but marriage takes work.
Don’t believe me? Listen to me piss and moan
About the house I have to clean, the food
I have to cook, the garden I have to weed,
My beautiful, rural commute ruined this week
with a spread-manure-fresh-dead-skunk reek.

I might be spoiled but at least I’m not content.

God forbid I should relax or take a break
Or cut back somewhere or say no to anything
Or take the risk of being seen as slacking
Or just enjoy the son I thought I couldn’t conceive.
I fight off jinxes with my constant, low-voltage rant,
Lest all my precious miseries be stripped from me.


This is and isn’t me speaking. Happy Hump Day, everyone!

10 responses to “The Moan Tax

  1. My wall is going to be filled with your poetry soon.

    Regarding your final commentary: So I was just talking about the intentional
    fallacy with my online students this week (when we study authors who are still alive and writing, they seem to get very concerned about this). What is your take on that? I think I’m going to query my author friends (you included) for ideas about how to explain this to students.

    • I think the intentional fallacy is when you think the author’s perspective is the BEST or only one to consider in interpretation. I think it’s some sort of Deconstructive Arrogance Fallacy (just made that up) when you think the author’s perspective is irrelevant. Just thinking about this in terms of Flannery O’Connor–should we really take her at her word that her fiction represents Catholicism well?

      • And so much of it is affected by the “record” of what we have to work with. If we read an interview (or a poem with an annotation like yours), the Deconstructive Arrogance Fallacy (love that) increases in arrogance, I think.

      • Some writers are more insightful about what they’re doing, too. Some writers really rely on being clueless about what they’re up to. And everything in between. And then time changes everything, right? I mean–I’m pretty sure Harriet Beecher Stowe would be horrified by some of what Uncle Tom’s Cabin implies, if she were somehow given 21st c. spectacles.

  2. Mrs. D.,
    That sound you hear is me clapping all the way from SC! You didn’t even add motherhood into the mix and that is the hardest job at all. I can so totally relate to this one. Might have to borrow it also…

    • Sorry, didn’t see the motherhood part, until now! You still make me dizzy just reading the list of activities you have going on…

    • I actually haven’t weeded the gardens AT ALL this year so far. That’s one way you know it’s not 100% me talking. I feel no shame when I see all the trash trees sprouting in the front walk beds–just “oh, I guess I could do that at some point….”

  3. “lest my precious misery be stripped of me” = brilliant.

  4. Whooooo-boy do I love this one!!!

  5. Pingback: Car Sonnets, Bloems, and Pogs | marniere

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