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  • Every Spring

     

    With each winter

    comes a shedding

    a sort of forgetting

    of the year’s growth, labored through love.

    The pained drop of each

    shriveled leaf from this grand tree—

    a quiet, steady loss of

    a once effortless strength—

    piles on the ground, baring a

    collection of affections that have since gone dry.

     

    It stands, determined,

    with its exposed branches stark

    against the pale, chilled sky,

    waiting….

    for absolution amidst the rain.

     

    All the while,

    the sun’s warmth

    never ceases,

    and far below the cool ground,

    the stubborn roots of this grand tree

    doggedly cling

    to a once-rich soil.

     

    The sun’s steadfast light

    and the baptisms wrought by the ugliest storms

    serve to breathe life into this weakened force

    serve to turn such profound loss into strength, and

    serve to push those fibrous roots

    deeper into the earth.

    All the while, this grand tree

    holds steady

    until the cold, bitter storms have passed.

    And one by one,

    delicate green leaves are reborn and

    perfumed blossoms burst forth from its

    once lonely branches,

    until the entire tree

    is once again enveloped in

    its former proud magnificence:

    offering shelter, solace, peaceful silence,

    and an unending love.

     

    This is the magic of

    every spring.

     

    ***

    Sunrise Villas

     

    White, grey, blue

    airy poufs of clouds imbued

    with countless, disjointed memories

    like a broken necklace from antiquity.

    They float above wilted, crumpled shoulders

    but anchored

    to the pallid and industrial tiles.

    A loneliness that stretches for miles

    with glimpses of loss, persistent and stubborn

    collapsing into the deepest caverns

    of their muddled minds’ eye.

    Wondering if their distant visitor

    will finally walk through that door

    as their feet brush against the cold, rigid floor

    as they watch through the shatter-proof glass

    at the cruelly-placed playground teeming with thick grass,

    bouncing color shapes, light squeals,

    the promise of hope hanging in a canopy among the leaves.

    Gazing blankly ahead with a desperate hunger for touch, for affection

    but only finding a faint reflection

    of an ever-shrinking future

    in the indifferent, second-hand, oak furniture.

    Under the stark, fluorescent bulbs, they wait with chagrin—

    exposed—

    the light shining on their translucent skin

    and a labyrinth of prodded and tired veins.

    They dimly recall a vibrant youth and beauty whose remains

    are now washed away by

    the sharp, frigid waters of time.

    Cards staring from quiet walls, askance

    Drawings from forgotten children blanketed in dust

    Abandoned to-do lists and remodeling plans

    Gardening tools, china dishes

    hastily given away at yard sales, passed into selfish hands.

    All there is left of their golden years

    are the tattered remnants of life

    Rapidly slipping away through withered fingers

    like the shallow air escaping their lungs

    like the fading beats of their broken hearts.

     

    ***

     

    Half and Half

     

    My toddler son and husband

    go together like cookies and milk—

    a sweet and youthful pairing

     

    effortlessly, he tosses our son into the air,

    flipping and tumbling him upside down

    dizzily over his arched back with

    an innate mutual trust

    that trapeze artists

    could only hope to build over years of

    twisting through space together.

    I wince at their carefree clumsiness

    but they just roar with laughter and

    make cartoony monster sounds.

     

    Sometimes, framed by the doorway, I stand

    with a placid smile glued to my face as

    I witness them play like long-lost soul mates.

    Like an elf silently and devotedly keeping the cogs of this machine moving,

    I resign to my post in the kitchen or den to

    cook their next dinner or clean up—

    after their playful wreckage and I assure myself:

    I, too, am a piece of his puzzle!

     

    But my certainty wavers as the

    chasm between us expands.

     

    I jealously begin to believe that this child is decidedly

    comprised more of his father’s

    traits than my own.

    If only I wasn’t shackled by my role as

    a mere provider, a dispenser of colorless necessities.

     

    And just when I begin

    To surrender to the despair

    over my woefully limited place in his life,

    a miracle happens:

    a familiar vamp signals the start

    of my favorite Hawaiian song. 

    My son excitedly raises the volume,

    and spontaneously dances,

    resting his big, almond, hazel eyes on me for guidance and approval.

     

    We kaholo and sway to the

    rhythmic bass guitar and falsetto choruses filling our home,

     

    laughter envelopes our tiny, silly bubble;

    we finally have our moment.

     

    About The Author

    dstamant

    Desiree St. Amant

    She earned her B.A. in English and M.S. in Education while in pursuit of one of her early passions, teaching. Ms. St. Amant has always enjoyed writing and dipping her toes in the waters whenever the opportunity or obligation arose. She dove into poetry essentially by accident when she needed to provide her students with examples of poems for their own creative writing. Desi’s work is inspired by the countless people who touched her life somehow and quite often unexpectingly: loved ones, complete strangers, estranged acquaintances….Currently, Desi teaches 9th grade English and 12th grade Advanced Placement Literature in Southern California, where she was born and raised. She is also a very busy mother of two boys, a five, and two-year old, and devoted wife to her talented husband who happens to be an artist and a fellow writer. Not only does Ms. St. Amant love traveling, dancing, reading, and writing whenever she can, Desi also believes in the therapeutic power of the outdoors and aching belly laughs.