Joshua Laid an Egg

(hour 15)

By Sandy Lender


When they’re the size of a quarter

You can’t sex turtles

So she’s been named Josh all her life

That’s thirty-two years now

Some of them better than others

Thanks to my financial highs and lows

And my understanding of turtle nutrition

She went to college with me

I joke that Josh is prob’ly the only RES with a BA

I built her a horse-trough pond in the back yard

With fencing around & above to keep out osprey

Because she’s a girl, she’s large

But still…


This spring, she produced an egg

No boy turtles involved

No winter hibernation beforehand

No special foods introduced to her diet

You can imagine my surprise

I dove into pet-turtle-owner panic

Of course…


How much calcium should I now add to her daily intake?

How much more UV light does she now require?

Why on Earth did she wait until 2020 to do this?

Or maybe it’s because of 2020

I mean…


Knowing the egg to be infertile,

I scooped it out and cleaned it up

I shall display it in a shadow box



Because my Joshua laid an egg.


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