Grandpa kept some of his teeth in a jar on the bathroom sink opposite the hand soap. Funny the things you begin to remember when your teeth start to go–again. Like the look in Grandpa’s eyes when he’d say: I wish I’d taken better care of my teeth. Don’t be like yer Grandpa. K? One tacit nod from you and you were off the hook. Grandpa would never know how often you devoured that delicious sugar or fell asleep long before tooth washing time. You knew it was best to keep your hopes for much needed denture advancements (by the time it mattered to your still fresh second set of choppers) to yourself. He was seventy then. You’re just forty now, but already you find yourself echoing long departed Grandpa to your child. Look at my teeth! Now don’t forget to brush!
Sister read an article to me once about how the toothpaste we’d been brushing with during our extended unshaven barefoot hippie years may have contributed immensely to the softening of our teeth. I’d love to pin it on something besides my on-again-off-again relationship with sugar and forgetfulness.
Teeth began to rattle about in my dreams at 30. At first, Kerouac comes through from the ether just to say hey and talk shop with us wandering dreamers. I’ve got his ear for a moment. Another poet standing by gets jealous; why’s she got his focus? What does she matter, this poet, what’s up with her? One of them offers me some gum to chew. And I take it. Just like that. I take it like anyone can be trusted any time. But not everyone is to be trusted always, no matter what they say. The gum binds my teeth like glue.
Snakes and shattered teeth took over my thirties nightmares from there. Always the sense that I’d lost my voice. Teeth glued to gum again. (Those bastard poets!) Or teeth shattered–a mouthful of brittle enamel bits and say goodbye to your labiodentals forever, Amber. No voice ever without proper placement! Ffff!
Chickens have no teeth, but a beak to the treat-bearing hand can feel like an ungrateful bite from a prehistoric fang mouth.
Crown swallowed by the gummy glue of a brownie last night. My recurring nightmare comes true, one sad little tooth at a time. I feel the sudden urge to study our crowning founding father, wooden teeth and all.
Egg count keeps rising. Everyone but Cuckoo is earning their keep now. So many eggs, we had to devil ’em just to keep up with production. Just the things for a stubby little nub of hillbilly tooth to gnaw on. Deviled eggs and smoothies for life! Who needs teeth? Oh, yeah. Ffff!