after Annie Finch
At times I can lament my youth
when body smooth and taut did prove
itself blind to age and the passage of Time
when words o’er ran the banks of meter and rhyme
and verse came flawlessly free and streaming.
Now the babies, crying then squealing
with delight and true frustration;
we are swamped with operation:
Family Life. So now it comes
to this sweet blog, moments of love’s
action and age unfolding in these
intangible pages. What does it mean
to find ourselves still writing, still loving,
still talking, working, seeking, moving
through the years? Me and you:
we grasp Time’s song and sing it through.
I hear the silence pop out of nothing.
The baby gulps his water with determined breath
beside me on the floor.
He eats only my breakfast from my plate
resting on my lap when I finally spread the blanket
and bring my coffee to the ground.
I listen to the crunch of toasted rye
and watch the caraway seeds drop,
see the bacon’s burnt edges coat his hands.
In a world where everything is within reach,
solitude and quiet float like monarchs in late spring,
bright, startling, luxurious, allusive.
I forget to look for them, yet am always scrambling to find them,
and here on this blanket we are alone together with only the sounds of our living.
Sip. Gulp. Chew. Swallow.
You scootch close so that our legs touch, rest your hand on my thigh, press your head to my side.
You’ve been with me twenty-three months though I feel you are visiting, flashing a rascal’s smile as you turn the bend.
I am guard, guide, confidant and safe-keeper, and you are charge, protegé, secret-teller and limit-pusher.
I search for the counterweight to the days.
One brick balancing fifty pebbles.
A shovel-full of time lifting a multitude of moments.
The three little ones swing
at the park, giggling.
I take a cue from a friend
and ask each,
“Do you feel happy?”
“Ga!” they answer in turn.
“What does it feel like?”
“Ga ga ga ga ooo”
We rush down the slides
on the way back to the van,
making a train, helping each other –
(just once more!).
And we scoop up our biggest one
from lesson at the violin teacher’s house
Fifteen minutes at the park
during the thirty minute music lesson
Time had nothing on us.