Wisdom, the Greeks said, was never a child,
Let alone a baby, but was born full grown
And armed. Forgive me, Athena; I like you,
As far as a man can like a goddess,
Admiring your cool grey eyes, your appreciation
Of rogues and quick lying tongues, but this
Was not the wisest choice you ever made.
Things were always clear to you; the world never
Slowly consented to bring itself into focus.
You cannot recall being helpless and loved.
No mother brushed your scant hair
Nor watched you fall asleep, nor sang to you;
Zeus never threw you high and caught you
So that you loudly squawked and crowed.
Uncles and aunts you had but none
Who made reed hats for you, or funny faces.
No one held you back when you wanted
To give an apple to the man-eating horse.
Wisdom knows, but does it learn, does it wonder
Does it sleep at night and remember being held?