A rabbi by any other name...
Poem published in Qarrtsiluni

Another mother poem: anticipatory psalm two


I forgot to hang the feeder.
The cat never settled on the couch
to watch the chickadees and juncos
at their perennial cocktail party.
Next year you'll be old enough
to notice as they congregate.
For now, settle into your stroller
and listen: as the equinox approaches
the woodpeckers are waking.
You can't see the trees' distant fingers,
too far and fine for your new eyes,
but a trillion twigs are turning nubbly
like grapestems denuded of fruit
and inside lurk embryonic leaves.
On your eighth day, flakes fell
thick and fast, coating hills
which haven't yet been bared, but
soon the snow will seep into soil
revealing the pale and sun-starved lawn.
Your short life has held only winter.
As you can smell milk when I hold you
I can smell the earth warming, the mud
laced with shreds of last year's mulch,
the spring I know is almost here.

This week I wound up working on another mother poem which draws inspiration both from the slowly turning round of the seasons and from the psalms. In some ways this is a follow-up to Anticipatory Psalm 1, and it takes the same form as that poem. I'm not sure why these psalms are arising in a single block of text, rather than in stanzas, but I tried this one both ways and I'm happier with it like this even though it's not the shape my poems usually take.

I think that my recent motherhood poems are more hopeful and less dark than some of the earlier ones were. There are good reasons for that. As we've moved beyond the "fourth trimester," many things are becoming easier. Drew's colic is largely over; the moments of sweetness are increasing. And the antidepressants my doctor prescribed seem, thank God, to be working. I'm grateful for all of those things. Parenting a newborn is still challenging, of course! But it's feeling more manageable now than it was.

I didn't manage to write to this week's readwritepoem prompt, but as usual, you can read what other people wrote (both for the prompt, and -- like this one -- poems which diverge from our assignment) by going to this week's Get Your Poem On post.