April 4th poem

Tuesday, April 04, 2017

Engima Poem

The way a crow turns and jumps into the air
as I round a corner in the car, as if posted there
to report my movements.  The way I used to tap
on my side as a child, counting syllables,
and when a teenager three light taps for bad thoughts
or wishes.  You had to avoid cracks in the sidewalk, even
dividing lines between concrete squares.  Thinking
of it now, a wave of affection for myself as lurching,
tapping small person, eyes drifting up to the right
to figure out the counting. As I write, my eyes drift up
to test it, then fix on moving clouds above the doctor's
office parking lot.  I study spring limbs stirring, present
despite myself.  Yesterday my son paused on our way out
of a room to point to window, excited. "Look!  A spring
breeze!"  Once in Michigan I was very small and the wind
so fierce it lifted me in my snowsuit as I clutched my mother's
hand.  There is only so much I can teach my son--  salt over
the shoulder, April Fool's, the habits of the bower bird,
how a kite lifts off the ground, how it drags.  After that,
as my granny said, he'll take off on his own skates.

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