May 112014
 

A little something for my lovely bride Billie, as she celebrates her 16th Mother’s Day, no small feat, I tell you…:

 

BillieWhether You are Listening or You are Reading
 

there is a poem for you and it may
be like this poem for my wife

who listens to a podcast and sometimes
laughs so hard her earbuds drop

and she looks at me and smiles, shares
the story of the actress and her monologue

or the man who unwittingly confesses
his most embarrassing moment on the radio

before she tucks the tiny white speakers
back into her ears. On the other side

of the table I slip into a book of poems,
sometimes nodding or clicking my tongue

in agreement before looking away
to the shelves across the room, the white

antler discovered in a saffron field,
or the photographs of my daughters

who are asleep now in their rooms,
Juliet curled beneath a quilt of flowers,

Ann-Elise bent across her black blanket,
foot draped over the bedframe, the house quiet

except for those burbling springs of laughter
and the murmur of turning pages

as I think of you again, listening or reading—
the poem paused by the person you love.

 

Originally appeared in Re)verb.

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