Frog Loses Sleep Puzzling over Parallel Universes

— Dean Rader

It was not the fear of nightmares or starchy sheets
That pulled Frog from his bed into night’s exhale
Where out on the grass in front of his house,
He fixed his attention on everything skyward.

The heavens ratcheted up, click by click.
Every puncture of brightness looked to Frog
Like stickpins on the inside of a black balloon.

This idea made him think of a giant Frog
With a long silver beard.  Maybe a cane or a robe.

The space between the sky and grass
Was dark and deep.  There was no wind.
Cricket under the porch was at it again, and Toad
Fuzzy in his blanket, slept as only Toads sleep.

The sky notched again and snapped into place.
It had never looked bigger.
Frog thought of each star as a lily pad bobbing along
In the cosmos, and he wondered if there might be more frogs
Beyond the starlight, hidden in the dark pools of sky,
Distant tadpoles deep beneath the surface of the lake.

He imagined a crazy planet of Frogs
With six legs and pointy ears.
Frogs with pouches and sideburns
Who drove around in green bumpy cars.
Frogs with two tongues who hated water.
Frogs with wings and hairy backs.

Frog had been reading again.
Heisenberg and Schrödinger made his head throb.
He knew electrons can be in two places concurrently,
But did that explain why
He wanted sleep and fly pudding at the same time?
Frog understands if he accepts cosmic inflation and
The holographic bound that parallel universes
Are a hop away—an identical copy of this world
Might only be 10e100 meters from his still-warm bed.

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