my son asks as he crafts a foam moustache from sud and splash but before he says—with his mother's help—he laughs, unsure how to deliver a joke or why it's funny for a mom to be needed so bad. Cover your eyes I demand as I funnel faucet water down his curl-plastered back. Later I sip mulled cider while we fight over cartoons and tangles, me trying to explain why hurt is worth a mane shine-sure and dangled. I don't want this—a conversation that admits we put more faith in blondes than our Cabinet, that Cosmo is beauty’s only map even if we know it's not accurate. I love his bubbly aftermath, the wet footprints he tracks —though I should scream for having to clean, I relish each wing-deep foot pad. Together we watch our balcony gurgle night, then spit it back. Someday I will buy him a globe and swab the air with its pastel slabs, beckon him to swirl the painted sea with his hands. I want him to see depth is not something bodies grasp, but an art our minds develop to gauge love's slap. For now, I point to planets I can't class, then ask him to believe I once slipped joints into the purple of my skirt just so I could observe my own smoke grow edgeless from the green thigh of New York's dirt. Does it mean anything that I love the lion and the path he traversed? Mothers aside, I say, let's gush not giggle when any animal gets high enough to chisel star, sky, or mud-bellied earth.