Departure + Arrival

I’m home & I’m alone

My mind plans & texts

My pictures speak

I hang the picture of Chris & David above my desk

My husband as a child: his joyful smile arrives above my desk

His brother whom I hardly know stares at the camera

He’s tall and thin, his jeans speak of the 70s.


I’m home & I’m alone

With the ghosts

I text with my daughter

Ask her too many questions

My mothering a scaffolding & a trench

Dig yourself out & see the world

Her joy jumps through pictures texted to me.


I’m home & I’m alone

Listening to Taylor Swift

Remembering the absolute joy

Of the night she sang to us

The joy of being with my daughter

Post-panic-attack, post funeral for a friend

The concert on that August evening a gift.


I’m home & I’m alone

Piecing together joyful memories

Offering an epigraph

To my child’s childhood

Looking at her dad as a child

The joy streams off both of them

I make a container of it & cry.


I’m home & I’m alone

I’ve arrived & she’s leaving

We are always arriving to ourselves

I am always writing about the arriving

& I’m catching the joy that travels out

& back, out & back: go out, I’ll hold home base

keep it safe, an arrival & departure space.




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