HOW THEY ARE
They tear us tirelessly head to toe.
They thrust long thick needles into our hearts.
Their invisible fingers pry open our eyelids at night.
“Why do you always worry, mother?
What a worrier you are.”
They are torn from us,
by green signals, voices
we cannot hear.
But you keep waiting for them,
in the late fall observing marsh in frost,
bearing in yourself one more of them, half your life past.
(Now it’s here: a new, small, beautiful life,
in a mad rush to liberty.)
They push us out of their way, laughing, loving.
They were children, who now suddenly are adults—
Before we ourselves
have grown up.