What are cows saying when they moo? (a poem)

Inspired by an article published this morning on LitHub…

Perhaps they are merely being reticent.

Perhaps the bovine lexicon
consists largely of words
that require complex sentences
in translation.

Perhaps they are speaking fluent English,
but our babel fish have all gone on strike—
because we never listen anyway.

Perhaps they have rewritten The Communist Manifesto,
and are transmitting it to one another
one word at a time.

Perhaps all that methane
is part of a secret weapons-production program,
and they are updating each other
on its status.

Perhaps they are sending signals
to the team of archaeologists
so they can find the spot marked X.

Perhaps they are communicating with the aliens
to coordinate the invasion.

Perhaps they are complaining
how hot it is
in all that leather.

Perhaps they are trying to perfect
what will always be a really bad impression
of W. C. Fields.

Perhaps they are playing Marco Polo,
but none of them know who that was
so they never answer.

Perhaps they’re just wondering
whatever happened to Carl.

(13 June 2018)