In seventh grade I was sent
to the principal’s office six times for laughing,
my giggles chronic hiccups
that rode the curb like a skateboard
until I wanted to bail from fear of the crash.
I held on, never jumped. My girlfriends
and I were making fun for ourselves.
Have you heard the commercial
with the laughing baby?
Not a smiling infant, slippery pink gums
peeking from behind the O
of the open baby mouth,
not tentative giggles
searching out questions for the world.
But a big baby guffaw, a Mississippi of sound
catching me in the solar plexus
where my own laugh begins.
We’re hardwired for this hidden language,
more powerful than books
We laugh together
and at nothing at all.
In the spirit of laughter, here’s a website devoted to laughing babies:
And here’s one of the laughing baby videos from Youtube: