Christopher Palmer is a poet and visual artist based in Canberra, Australia. He's been published in eleven countries, including in the Australian Poetry Journal, Blue Collar Review, The Brasilia Review, The Galway Review, Shot Glass Journal, and Takahē, among others. His first collection, Afterlives, was published by Ginninderra Press in 2016.
The Getting of Wisdom
After Jennifer Harrison
As my father said,
If you don't know a word look it up
no need to respect your elders just because
they're older, half a beer to wet the whistle.
Start at the roof and work your way down
when washing the car, use clothes pegs
in home repairs, and mowing the lawn
in a spiral is the most efficient way.
Your mum took my son away from me
that was one of my grandmother's
favourites. Always look after your teeth
and never ask an older woman her age
but the one that really used to get me was
eggs are eggs and the Lord made shrimps.