Knucklewalker's Lament
Entry for 2016-04-19


Humans and chimps are far more alike
than any two genera of beetles. Nonetheless,
animals that walk upright with their hands
dangling free are self-aggrandizingly defined
as hominids, not apes.
-- Lynn Margulis
As everyone knows,
if Shakespeare had needed
to write with his toes,
his verse would be shorter
and so would his prose.
His plays would be fewer
and Twelfth Night might be
an insupportable luxury,

as would two volumes,
or possibly all,
of Edward the Gibbon's
Decline and Fall

Fateful the day
on the plains of Afar,
after a leadership seminar,
when an ape arose,
cried, "Look at me!
Erect! My hands
and my fingers free!"

Good thing, too,
or the rest of the breed
might inhabit a zoo,
and If everyone needed
their hands to walk,
Italians wouldn't
be able to talk