Saturday, March 04, 2006

poor little night writings

to a man opening gifts at my table

I come downstairs, unfocussed
And we’ve discussed this
You are focused
And you are sitting at my table
The one with my mother’s falling leaves quilt on it
That I use as a tablecloth
And you are looking at the card
(Originally this was
Valentine’s Day in Four Parts,
But the other parts remain undone)
Bent over, scrutinizing it
And the silly sentimental white tissue paper
With the purple hearts is strewn
Over the falling leaves
And I see you haven’t waited for me--
Am I that slow, did you really think I wasn’t coming down---
But you seem happy and
I tell myself it’s just a slightly different tradition, this not waiting
As a lot of things are
Just a slightly different tradition
Later you forget your glasses
They are under the hearts
And above the falling leaves.

8 comments:

V said...

A point in time, beautifully described!
V

Gannet Girl said...

I love this. So much past and present and future in this moment.

Vicky said...

This is quite lovely. The moment is delicately described and leaves an emotional impression. Thank you, Beth,

Vicky

robbo said...

the glasses,where they are, why they are, create the most powerful image...

Cynthia said...

Such wonderful images, clear observation and a delicacy that is enviable. I really love this poem.

Erin said...

Beth, I enjoyed reading this. (In fact, just read it 3 times!) I'm not sure if I should feel happy or sad for the speaker. Is she truly OK with the "slightly different tradition" or is she making excuses for some hurt that runs a bit deeper than this incident? Will finding the glasses "under the hearts / And above the falling leaves" help them both to see?

Thank you for sharing!

Theresa Williams said...

"Falling leaves"--how fabulous. You foretell the change in the speaker beautifully, the acceptance of a "slightly different tradition."

ckays1967 said...

I love the idea of a mate too excited too wait...like a child, although it is clear he is not.

Great tension and relief.