Hours after
Her Phone Call

Penelope Scambly Schott
A freight train in the next county.
Three a.m. Even our screech owl asleep.
My husband breathes slow on the next pillow,
likewise the dog on her wicker couch.
The icebox trots overtime, shuts off.
Too soon in the year for crickets.
Only the appalling roar of moonlight
through white organdy, drip of a toilet
at the back of the house, too far to hear,
the spooked nickering of my grown daughter
across three thousand miles of dark,
that iron shoe in my heart.

§     §     §

Harmonies for
The Alienation
Of My Daughter

Sandra McPherson
I wish I could put her in the birdhouse.
Evicted from her rented room,
she pushes a wheelchair through rain
when only prowl cars can watch her.
I am tossing, it is no dream
she pushes her belongings through night rain
to someplace wet and cold she will belong.
How have I let this happen?
I wish I could put her in the birdhouse.

Some days she bikes to work,
washes the unmovable man in bed,
cleans the quadriplegic quarterback's
cave and then his parrot's cage,
fastens baby's breath in the paralyzed
woman's hair for the opera.
Some days she comes home tired, lies
down in earphones on the floor,
and cannot cry.

If she is moth-crazy (nice Navaho for mad),
she makes reparations to the moths
by opening the night door to her light.
Then she goes up on the roof,
says it is covered with little white rocks
and mushrooms. Says: "It is so silent."
Says: "The stars are writing a bit
like you but not keeping a file on me
like you." Says: "Mother ---

Mother's crazy too."

--- From Family Reunion: Poems
About Parenting Grown Children

Sondra Zeidenstein, Editor
©2003Chicory Blue Press
Goshen CT 06756

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