Season of Change

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.

 

May bloomed.

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.

Drove home.

Called my husband,

called my sister,

called the airline.

 

24-hours sped by.

I sat in a chair

and

I watched Mom’s weakening heartbeat

recede into

eternity.

April 27: Poetry Reading by the Wyomissing Poetry Practicum Group

Don’t forget!  Join us tomorrow, Wednesday, April 27 from 6 pm-8 pm at the Wyomissing Public Library, for a poetry reading by members of the Wyomissing Poetry Practicum, including Kirsten P. Haas.  Also participating will be students of Heather Thomas, former Berks County Poet Laureate, who is currently teaching “Vision to Revision”, a poetry writing class at The GoggleWorks Center for the Arts in Reading, PA.
The Wyomissing Poetry Practicum is led by current Berks County Poet Laureate Nancy Yeager and meets every Thursday from 1:30 pm- 3 pm at the Wyomissing Public Library (9 Reading Boulevard, Wyomissing, PA).

Primary Day

Remnant of Monday’s moon
hangs in mid-sky
just over the Japanese maple
on the corner of the bank drive-thru window.
The clean freshness of just-cut grass
peppers the morning mugginess.

Cars roll by
a succession of wheels
on the way to
work?
school?

I watch the morning world from
the brown metal chair
in the corner.

A respite from my brisk walk
down the hill
to the synagogue
to cast my vote.

I wonder
how my actions might impact
this microcosm
this morning world
on the corner.

Is it as simple as ordering
a cup
of coffee?

After Art Class

She shuffles along
the mud-streaked wood floor
Wheezes
punctuate the forward push
of each foot.

Sigh

She cautiously lowers herself onto the bench.

Slouched
against the wall

she patiently waits
amid the whirlwind of art students coming and going.

She catches her breath.

A smile slowly spreads
as she admires the field of golden sunflowers
captured forever on painted canvas

by her own
trembling
hand.