Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Choosing to Stay at Home with kids, poem

A Woman's Choice

It's the small details:
rat's nest in his hair,
holes in her tights,
who is whose friend today at school,
making sure the right combo of green & orange
gets into their mouths, being there at 3:45
to greet the loudmouth bus driver &
rescue my five year old from bumpy sleep.

No pay, long hours, no public recognition
yet in my heart a small voice says
cancel all job interviews
hold that resume in a file waiting,
like my high heels and work suits in the cupboard,
let my degrees gather dust on the wall.

I want to be there when the first tooth falls,
a quiet rite of passage & mine to revel in.
It means postponing ego strokes.
It means no time just for me, but also
not being split down the middle working double shifts.
I can wait for the glory of a pat on the back & a salaried job.

Right now there's some small things I must attend to:
this three-year-old in pigtails, this fragile boy in the schoolyard.

published in Mothering Magazine

Monday, July 21, 2008

menopause poems

Medusa 1878 Arnold Bocklin

I had come to the house, in a cave of trees,
facing a sheer sky.
Everything moved, - a bell hung ready to strike.
Sun and reflection wheeled by.

When the bare eyes were before me
and the hissing hair,
held up at a window, seen through a door.
The stiff bald eyes, the serpents on the forehead
formed in the air.

This is a dead scene forever now.
Nothing will ever stir.
The end will never brighten it more than this.
Nor the rain blur.

The water will always fall, and will not fall,
and the tipped bell make no soun.
The grass will always be growing for hay
Deep on the ground.

And I shall stand here like a shadow
Under the great balanced day.
My eyes on the yellow dust, that was lifting in the wind,
And does not drift away.

Louise Bogan (1897-1970) American poet,
found in Women Poets from Antiquity to Now