How lucky that they grow despite our seeming lack of effort:
the lush fig tree in the yard, a stand of hydrangea pushing out
planet after planet of deepest blue. Beside the front steps,
gardenia—rosal—unfurl and perfume our recent comings and
goings. Children are like that too, though we try to be more
faithful to their care. I remember how, before he was two,
my grandson didn’t know what sugar was—the kind you spoon
out of a jar and sprinkle on cereal or toast, though fruit
was fine. In their own childhoods, I watched out for my daughters’
every elbow scrape, every tumble; tended their fevers with cool
cloths. Isn’t a certain steadfastness asked of mothers? That we make
of ourselves a home to always return to. That we keep
our hands on the rudder, bear them through the narrow channels
so at the end, they might open up to embrace the sky.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.