by Karen Kelsay
She is frail, her veil of happiness is
replaced in turn by fear, then bewilderment.
Today, she presents a branch before
garden lilies, like a child might coax a parakeet
to perch. Beside the magnolia, where shadows
meet white geraniums she once planted, the caregiver
settles her in a wooden lawn chair. Uneasy beneath
summer’s glare, she retreats to confines of her bedroom,
where lamps cannot illuminate rose buds
or reveal the sycamore’s aging bark.
Her cat, once draped on her lap, lingers on the lawn;
she no longer remembers her daughter.
Only her husband’s voice can pluck
her from herself, like the last yellow blossom
snipped from a stranger’s yard.
For more about Karen Kelsay, go here (scroll to end).