Call him Granite, Argonaut, Thievery-Slick. Tusk
or Wolfe with an “e.” Call him Steel and dream him tougher
than the names kids fling at each other. What about Thor?
Can’t you just picture him mjolniring down the football field,
the other team parting like the sea for the divine? Give him
a name like Mahogany Foxx, a name that looks good
in calligraphy. Will he be famous? Will he fly rockets?
Will he dance like rapids on a river? Name him River.
He may paint, sail, fight to save endangered antbirds of Brazil.
Will his be a quiet life of books and coffee? Or
a black-ops in the jungle life? Or both? Anything
is possible for Thunder/Claw/Cathedral/Wing. Imagine:
how many letters he’ll sign Love, Avalanche; how many hours
he’ll spend in the Atlantic, in museums, in the back of the line
because, like his father, he’s the tallest.
Go to Aladdin’s Castle in Roanoke ten years from today.
In the high score columns of which games
blink the initials PWT? Phoenix Wildebeest Trull.
Listen to the roar in twenty-two years
when Mercury Flyer takes the stage, electric guitar
over his shoulder, sparkly indigo pick in his teeth. Hey!
What about Sparkly Indigo? No, make that Indigo Spark.
Nothing like a unique moniker to get the world to chin-up
and notice. Don’t get mad. Please, don’t take offense.
I know how serious a task it is to give the baby this first gift.
You want to get it right. The perfect name,
followed by exposure to Mozart and Moses and Beatrix Potter,
vegetables and violin and no films rated R. Of course,
as soon as he adventures out of the womb, he belongs to the world,
to its swindle and swoon, its crow and cringe,
where you can’t protect him with a name, you know.
All kids are going to get beat up in some way over something.
At least give him a name he alone can claim as he tumbles
into the fray. I have wishes for him, too.
He will be my first nephew, a golden crown
that he should feel upon him from the start, his name glinting
among the Mikes and Christophers. Now is your chance
to anchor him to earth (Greenery, Stone) and launch him
into flight (Albatross, Krypton). Call him
something royal: Duke or Kingfish. Something inscrutable
like Mist. Call him Ghost that he may linger.
Let his name be Arrow. Let it startle, when spoken,
the bow of the mighty tongue.