Tag Archives: motherhood

30/30 Project: The Ides of March Version


Ah, the Ides of March.  A day filled with trepidation, if you go in for that sort of thing.  It has been kind of a funky one, here, but, once again, poetry saves me!  And the milkman, of course.  Gotta love the milkman.

If you are enjoying the Mary series, why not stop by and thank Tupelo Press with a teeny, tiny donation?  It’s all their doing, you know, this deluge of all poems Mary!




The True Story of Mary and the Spilled Milk

It always begins in half-light,
silent houses curled on their sides,

grass poised to resume its steady thrust.
This is the soft hour she likes best,

before morning pours its cereal
and soles pick up where they left off.

In these see-through moments,
she walks the neighborhood,

making love to what goes on
just past the coupling shutters.

When you are a mother you see
what the other women do not:

rough hands cupping hips,
full lips falling like rain.

You hear babies slip
through open crib rails,

hear men sigh
in something like sleep.

Oh, Queen of the Gaze.
Oh, Lady of Streetlamp Eyes.

You are not here to help them,
only to look in their empty windows,

practice their intimate gestures.
Tomorrow you may wish them well.


from the lake: a new series


Since it’s where I’ll be for the next couple weeks, I have decided to try a new series of poems: observations from the lake.  The first is a letter poem, written to Carolee as I sat watching the children drift out to the middle of the bay on a raft. It doesn’t feel completely finished, but it’s a draft, and that is progress…


Dear Carolee:

Here at the lake where grass and leaves rise
out of the water without any more purpose
than the empty snail shells dotting the beach
it occurs to me I have done little with my thirties.

Thirties—as though the decade was a pair of dice,
a hand of cards, a six-pack of cold long necks
sweating on a picnic table in the sun.
Ten years floating between luck and vice.

The crow cawing madly to its invisible mate agrees.

…………………..(Have you done with your one wild and precious life?)

I read between the lines….listen between the notes.

When the second bird answers—
another country heard from—
I can’t tell if she is agreeing
on the state of my empty-shell years:
or, from one mother roosting,
bored on her nest, to another
trying to make me feel better.