torn from my calendar,
my morning coke sweating onto the paper,
the wrong-read words a coaster to reassure me.
blurry early morning eyes none the wiser.
yesterday i was awaker than usual and read the truth.
i like my each new morning version better.
the ever-wonderful michael asked the other day how long it would take before he stopped saying he was going to run over to ask his dad something, his heart knowing immediately he couldn't, his dad gone the night before halloween. and i said forever. a long time. you will be saying the words wrong for a while. you are standing in a new place - it takes a while to remember the solid feel of land.
a year ago today i had the last conversation with my mother i would ever have. it was on a monday last year, and last night felt like the real year ago; i said a thank you to the moon and stars for the hours we waited in the emergency room, no idea that the laughter we shared that evening would be the last. the next morning i would be standing in a place i'd never stood and i would stand there through the rest of february, not on solid ground, but at sea, in storms, leaning into the wind. it would take a long, long time to lose my sea legs.
this month i feel them stirring, the memories of last february close to the skin. forgive me if i wander to those days a bit - i won't stay long. i have hearts to photograph, words of love to tell you, and i promise they will come. but for today, in this new place i stand, one year past hearing my mother's laughter, but still weeks from saying goodbye, i have only these words.
it is a gray day and there are birds happy in the trees.
despite the chill,
despite the freeze warning for tonight.
another gift to gather.
i will take their song with me today;
i hear my mother's laughter behind the notes.