When it came to poetry, my father was not an absolutist. Pie was his favorite subject for a couplet, but every three or four weeks he would write about something else—perhaps a couplet like
“’Eat your food,’ gently said Mom to little son Roddy.
‘If you don’t, I will break every bone in your body.’”
The next day he would be back to pies --
“Mrs. Trillin’s pecan pie, so nutritious and delicious
Will make a wild man mild and a mild man vicious.”