Yes, oh yes,
I want to do enormous favors for you,
the kind involving cash, and inconvenience,
and driving long hours, all over the state,
preferably in the rainy dark, on deer-crowded
back roads, in complicated maneuvers
involving your car, your sister’s car,
a mechanic whose garage we can’t find
in the dark, and some guy named Lloyd
who we don’t even know,
but this day wasn’t a big enough mess
so we threw him in,
because you know for certain that
when everyone else says No,
You can ask for help from one person who
may well grumble or write a poem about it,
but will eventually pick up the keys and say
Tag Archives: poem about mothers
Yes, oh yes,
Searching for your one important face
in a crowd of caps and gowns
and beach balls—which are against
The Rules and…There— you turn,
see me and grin that always smile
which all these years of practice
taught me to translate with ease
into this jumble of:
I’m hot, this hat itches, isn’t this whole
thing ridiculous but funny?
And as always, the grin includes
Instructions for me–
Please Do Not:
Take any more pictures
Comment on my sneakers
Or the girl in the next aisle.
I smile right back, knowing you too
are a master translator:
I love you, we both say,
as I reach for the camera.
My work in this world
wanders its cities in two bodies,
his, hers, once mine.
Bodies given, year by year,
all I knew of patience,
kindness, how a sense
of humor eases the rough patches.
But also captive witnesses to all
I knew of frustration, grief, anger.
Everything I had to offer
carried like a package inside their
own true selves.
And they go traveling
Half-formed and half-dressed
never bothering with a warm coat
determined not to shiver
and admit their mother was right.
They set off into this world that
will please and praise and batter them.
I chase them down the street,
waving mittens and advice, calling out,
Wait, there’s one more thing I forgot to tell you.