Generations

Written by: Mark Peterson

Denial is a can of peas
whose contents
should never be indulged
beyond the expiration date.
Yet there I stood, 
evidence screaming reality
at my eyes, their gaze steadfast
upon the wailing baby girl 
before me in her bassinet.
My mind then confidently knew
that what lay there
could have never come
from briefest self-indulgence.
Still, my heart wouldn't listen—
And rightly so.

I turned and faced
a solitary window,
which framed a cold and gray
November day
that froze as well
the unrecorded moment.
Though soft upon my parted lips
came unbidden words:
“I love you, dearest child”—
knowing all that was yet to be,
for here lay an open book
in which life would write about
a young girl’s timeless, playful mirth,
but also test her brazen dreams
and tireless hopes alike.
	
On life’s other end,
my mother wearies
of her endless days
and puzzles
over life prolonged well past
these ninety-seven years—
asking with familiar eyes,
undimmed by age,
the reason why,
which none can answer,
and which none tries,
and silence reigns.
Then, soon enough
both memories and questions fade,
their cycles now complete.

Mark B. Peterson, Any Poem/Any Form, December 26, 2013