Elizabeth Barrette (ysabetwordsmith) wrote,
Elizabeth Barrette
ysabetwordsmith

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Poem: "Stepchild Wit"

This poem came from the December 1, 2009 poetry fishbowl. It was inspired by an anonymous prompt and sponsored by janetmiles.


Stepchild Wit



The perfect rejoinder
arrives a minute too late
to be flung like a dagger
at some departing back.

It lives on the staircase,
a creature of nooks and treads,
crannies and shadows,
never braving the spotlight of speech.

To the French, it is
l’esprit d’escalier.
In German, it is
treppenwitz.

In any tongue,
it’s the stepchild wit
that we only imagine would save us
if we spoke it aloud.
Tags: cyberfunded creativity, fishbowl, linguistics, poem, poetry, reading, writing
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