I bought a new tube of toothpaste on
Tuesday, long before the old one ran out.
Its label claimed in red type Deep Cleaning.
So, in truth, had the earlier one, but this tube
Seemed genuinely alarmed about my gums
I was still applying paste from the old tube,
But my eyes stayed fixed upon its plump
successor waiting beside it in a glass.
I should simply switch now, I thought.
The transfer will happen soon enough.
And, when I was younger, I might have
Made the switch sooner, without qualms.
But that old tube said, “I have more to give
If you’ll just squeeze from the bottom”.
I paused my sonic brushing, looked at
The worn tube living out its final days
with cracking paint and the words
Deep Cleaning now crushed into
something reading like Dee ing. So I
grabbed the new tube and slid it
Into the drawer by the sink. There
Will be time enough for you to shine.
For now, hail a gallant old warrior in
the battle against tartar and plaque,
Dying in his noble halter just for me.
Thank you, sir, for your brave service.