Big brother showed me the way
How to give up the bottle
Drink from a Mickey Mouse glass
How to sit on the potty
And how to wipe my ass.

How to leave our double bed
(tired of smothering me under a pillow,
he left me for dead)
How to run to school
Without getting clobbered

How to dress like a hobo for Halloween
Paint a moustache with a burnt cork
And what to make of sprouting pubic hair

Teachers to avoid
And how to pass the Regent exams

How to earn 21 merit badges
Sleep in snow in down sleeping bags
Build a Dutch oven,
And bake a lemon-meringue pie

How to smoke a corncob pipe
And comb my hair with lanolin
How to downshift a VW bug
And change points and pugs
And anti-freeze in Dad’s Desoto

How to date and dance a Foxtrot
French kiss and use a condom

How to avoid the draft
By staying in school (didn’t work for long)
I was soon doing pushups at Camp Lejeune
He warned me of the venality of Wall Street
And taught me how to take care of money

Now, as I push him in a wheelchair
Down a rose-strewn garden path

It’s my turn:

Which way to the Valley of the Moon?