Consider the narwhal, I said in the midst of draining another glass
What more evidence does one need that Nature, first and foremost,
Is simply an endless exercise in whimsy and giddiness?
You were about to answer, but another voice,
Dispassionate and disembodied, wafted in from somewhere along the bar:
It’s the fingerprints of God, telling us that true beauty is in function,
And that the vanity of the façade is wholly repugnant to Him.
I’d snapped my head around to see who’d issued such a dogmatic challenge,
But every face was buried in some intimate conversation
Or fixated forlornly on some spot in front of them,
So I addressed the query to the bartender—So what is it, then,
Mother Nature having a laugh, or stern admonition from Our Maker?
The man behind the bar gave a bit of a sigh, and peered over his glasses at me.
I know two things, he said, First, the flatfish he has for dinner
Doesn’t give a tinker’s damn either way, and, second,
I’m calling your stupid drunk ass a cab,
Because anyone who’s reached the point of arguing about a goddamn narwhal
Has no business being behind the wheel.