for my daughter Sara Marie
There was a time her door was never closed.
Her music box played “Für Elise” in plinks.
Her crib new-bought—I drew her sleeping there.
The little drawing sits beside my chair.
These days, she ornaments her hands with rings.
She’s seventeen. Her door is one I knock.
There was a time I daily brushed her hair
By window light—I bathed her, in the sink
In sunny water, in the kitchen, there.
I’ve bought her several thousand things to wear,
And now this boy buys her silver rings.
He goes inside her room and shuts the door.
Those days, to rock her was a form of prayer.
She’d gaze at me, and blink, and I would sing
Of bees and horses, in the pasture, there.
The drawing sits as still as nap-time air—
Her curled-up hand—that precious line, her cheek…
Next year her door will stand, again, ajar
But she herself will not be living there.