Kant Be Otherwise

Don’t just suggest it’s universal law
by way of telling others how to act,
while giving citizens a deal that’s raw.
Through modeling create a moral fact
which like a planted seed sprouts in the hearts
of men who’d overrun domestic plants
despite good husbandry the law imparts.
For in the end they’re autocratic rants
that water any seedlings that we’ve sown,
until they’re toxic as the hyacinth
whose flowers turn to poison once they’re grown.
Indeed, such actions sprout a labyrinth
of foliage from which there’s no escape,
but to assume a more complicit shape.

Frank De Canio was born and bred in New Jersey, and works in New York. He's been published in Danger, Pleiades, Genie, Write On!, Red Owl, Blue Unicorn and Ship of Fools, among others, and moderates a Café Philo in Manhattan. Read other articles by Frank.