A Note To The Rough Beast Slouching Toward Bethlehem From Its Mother

What’s this I hear about you slouching?

Photo by Donovan Reeves on Unsplash


I figured I’d reach you here since heaven knows it’s such a burden for you to call me. God forbid you check in once in a while.

What’s this I hear about you slouching? For God’s sake, David, don’t slouch! You want to end up like poor Aunt Yevette? All day she slouched, now look at her. Dead in the ground, rest her soul. Stand straight, David! How are you going to meet a girl if you’re slumped over looking at the grass?

Irene calls me the other day; she says, “Esther, Esther, did you see David’s poem?” I said, “My David wrote a poem? News to me!” Irene says, “No, no, David’s IN a poem.” Of course. Leave it to my son to be in a poem and not bother to tell his mother! I have to hear it from Irene, and don’t think that didn’t give her satisfaction.

Then she tells me you’re not only slouching, but you’re slouching towards Bethlehem, of all places. Nowhere is good enough for my David, he has to go to Bethlehem all the sudden. And he can’t make time to stop and say hello to his mother on the way? Don’t think I don’t know you passed here without so much as a honk of the horn. I may not have your fancy education, but I know which way Israel is.

Finally, Irene tells me the kicker. She tells me the poem says you’re slouching toward Bethlehem to be born. What is that supposed to mean, David? One birth not enough for you, Mr. Big Shot? Let me tell you, it was enough for me. Spend 20 hours in labor with a rough beast then tell me you want to get back in line. Not likely!

David, I don’t like you slouching around the Holy Land and talking about being born. Why can’t you meet a nice girl and settle down for once in your life? ‘No, of course not, perish the thought!’ Great. Irene’s son is in the Times-Journal for his new startup, my son is in a poem for his bad posture. What did I do to deserve this, David? Are you trying to kill me?

David, do you need money? For God’s sake, just tell me and I will send over a check! All that education and no job. Just travels around the globe breaking his mother’s heart.

Give your poor mother a call, David. And no more poems. I don’t want another call from Irene telling me my son’s antics are inspiring the bards. “The Second Coming,” it’s called. How ironic for a son who only visits his mother once a year! Second coming, I should be so lucky.



PS: I saw Silvia’s daughter Penny in CVS. She’s married to Patty Midhurst’s son and has three children. Beautiful family!



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r.j. kushner

Dubbed by the New York Times as “all out of free articles this month.”