For Jonathan Baldini (And For Las Vegas)

Sunday, it’s gorgeous,
Though I’m the last that should speak for us.
A qualified poet must be bleeding at least,
Not savoring this glory, this revel, this feast.
The air’s shot with gold, the grass is white-kissed,
A drinkable sky, tapped pink and bisque.
It’s gorgeous, though,
Gorgeous, you know.
Problem is, the gold drops fast,
Can’t find the words to make it last.
Sisters weep, brothers fly
To the other side of that drinkable sky.
Mama wants his skin, oh, so much;
He’s never not here, she just can’t touch.
Daddy doesn’t cry; he wails inside,
‘We’re still six, though we look like five.’
But the baby’s so soft, so full in my arms,
She smells like life wrapped around my heart.
And the sky explodes yellow, red, magenta, blue.
A royal way, a Prince’s avenue.
It’s gorgeous though,
Gorgeous, you know.
Then the world goes silent; Evil shows his face.
I’ll shield you with my body and outpoured grace.
It’s beautiful, that grace, that flesh for flesh,
Monday’s sky is gray, but this flesh is blessed.
Sky wasn’t made to stay that way,
It will gold and it will part and we will touch one day.


Dear Mother In Law

Dear Mother In Law,
Look with gentleness
Upon the oddly assorted
Your son’s wife adorns herself with this
She knows she has no excuse –
Two adults in a Fiat, how hard can it be??
But, dear MIL, she has that recurrent malady, that
Packing Paralysis.

Browns, Blacks, Russets,
Leathers, Denims,
Downs or Fleeces,
Sleeves or no?
Boots or clogs? Or heels or flops?  Or one of each?
And so she hops.
The gray paisley scarf with
Silver threads, which
Does not match with anything?
Triumphantly in the suitcase!
The mustard one that adds real autumn soupçon?
Forgotten as a yahoo password.
Belts, earrings, running shoes,
Like place cards for the Thanksgiving table,
Newspaper article about the kids,
Oddities all and faithfully packed
Ducks in a row.
But a melange, a jester’s patchwork
Of basic clothing.  Astonishing.  Weepable.

Dessert, devotional, face soap,
Wrinkled shirts as useful as doilies,
Carted to and fro, merely freight and weight.
All the ‘ers’: charger, razor, tweezer;
Layers for unlayering after too many hours sitting
Stuffy by the fire,
Or relayering for a hike up Lookout.
T’s to Parkas, she’ll season it all wrong.

You are right. She could have packed it all
By now. But it is easier,
And quilt-covered pleasant,
And gratifyingly indulgent, to
Wallow in the overwhelm, to
Despise the very concept of the overnight, to
Once again retreat with Eudora and say,
“Away, cruel world!”

No one bother me, I’m busy
Deliciously hating packing.