That was the day we played all day outside
And ride imaginary stick horses around
Shooting and shouting as if our lungs was rawhide
It was in imagination that the fun abound
That was the day the house seemed in disrepair
Furniture and boxes all out of place
Chaos reigned while mama cleaned everywhere
Leaving germ and dirt without a trace.
I thought of mama today as I watched you clean
Remembered how we would wipe our foot
On the little mat, but mostly could not dare go in
As if we were the grime or the cause of soot
Food would only come when mama took a break
But not before dark and howling belly turned
Play into night, and after the yard was swept and raked
Something about you in mama I'd discerned.
What was all that cleaning just to be clean, I ask
Or was it a search for something missing here
What deeper motive had the highly honored task
What coin, or sheep, or son hid behind the tear
What golden fleece or grail to you both have been lost
I know mama cleaning searched for meaning here
As if sin was something we could see like life's dross
As if to seek was the magic bullet for man's despair.
O something about you remind me of mama, my dear
And childhood comes rushing back in floods
Two sparse rooms and five pieces of furniture there
While we chased butterflies from dying buds
You are different though, for you have allowed us in
Watching our eyes to tell you of missing spots
But we just laugh and tell long tales while you clean
Life is too short to search or go connecting dots.