Letter to Mom, 2015
The mid-April air is sweet.
Lilacs have their turn now,
magnolias a forgotten dream;
spring wind strips away plum blossoms,
sends pink snow swirling into gutters.
Azaleas and rhodies kick their heels
at the street– Can-can dancers
raising their dresses: pinks, reds, oranges,
whites, purples all in a line. A few frogs
still chirp at dusk, remind me of cicadas,
long, thick evenings bottling lightning bugs.
Another lifetime I brought you hand-picked
bouquets of May flowers; you cut lilacs
for the kitchen table, the one we still gather
around. I can’t bring myself to throw away
the ladder-back chairs we said grace upon–
bless this– they collapse in the shed,
fall apart like faded letters, brittle,
last year’s blossoms.