Wednesday, June 4, 2014

The tree in the church yard

The tree in the corner
of the church yard
looks like the stomach of a woman
who has given birth.

Round and slack
(but mostly)
Arms able to bear growth
as well as
to say goodbye.

My children’s names
are etched in ink in my skin
tracing, swirling lines,
as though I could forget them.
Merit badge for rebellion,
another soccer mom longing
for a nap.

The tree will outlast me.
Her round belly presiding
magisterially over weddings,
burials, easter vigils  and egg hunts
Years after our dust
returns to dust.
Years after the blue-black earth
claims me back, tattoos long faded
children long grown.