In the gaze of the other

"My mistress' eyes are nothing…"

Pre-Mother’s Day

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My children are leaving,
Attending a birthday party
For the evening while their
Father and I dine on wine
By heating lamp on a blue-
Awning’d patio across town.

I wish them a fine evening
And they do likewise for me,
An amicable arrangement, but
I mourn the loveliness of us,
We four of the indominatable
Good middle class’ right luck.

When we were knitted kin, we
All in a bunch, toe to toes
Seated on couches watching
Princesses and Bambi, Barney
And doggies on two leashes
Herding babies on front lawns.

I picture them gone and grown,
Harvesting their own with seeds
Sown before knowing themselves,
Remnants of history forwarded
To Mother’s Days gushing love
Walking out the door waving bye.

Cruel witness to our days’ ends
My own mother sits motionless
Waiting for doors opening wide
Ready for her entry’s surrender
While nibbling-choking pear bits
Sucking air in to wind it down.

Stretches not cycles mark time
Willing us expand and contract
As the earth spins us like dice
Numbers arising lucky and lost
Tossed like mystery dryer socks
Ever seeking our missing halves.

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