By Kirsten P. Haas 09/14/2015
This piece was the second one I wrote in the Wyomissing Poetry Practicum in fall 2015. When I shared it with the group, I could not read it all the way through and Mary (whom I had just met that day), a fellow poet, put her arm around me, gently took the paper out of my hand and finished reading it to the group. Since that day, I have shared this piece at a few readings and it never gets easier. I share it today on the occasion of my Mom’s birthday.
Winter’s cold malingered into March.
My runner’s snot froze in cheap knit gloves.
I spent a long weekend with friends celebrating St. Patrick’s Day.
We paused to run a half-marathon on Sunday and resumed the festivities.
We drove home.
Spring arrived with the afternoon.
The telephone rang and work paused for a plane ride home.
April exploded, spreading pollen across the South.
Bethany and I fetched food, drink and meds.
We napped with Mom,
reminisced with Mom,
overwhelmed the kitchen with Easter baking and cheered for Bubba Watson to win the Masters.
Mom called me on her way into surgery.
She said I’m scared, Kiki.
I assured her You will be fine.
I love you and I will talk to you when you wake up.
Seven days passed.
Wednesday morning arrived and the telephone rang.
Dad said it’s time to come home and say goodbye.
I shut down my computer and walked out of the office.
Called my husband,
called my sister,
called the airline.
24-hours sped by.
I sat in a chair
I watched Mom’s weakening heartbeat