A Mother's Voice

By Philip C. Kolin - Hattiesburg, Mississippi, USA - 15 September 2013



Your voice -- close as sunlight,
a mother’s care and comfort --
I wish I had saved
in the family photo album.


Though far as the moon’s morning
fading voices of the dead
softly recall small harvests,
the rich bounty of memory:


peddlers singing about watermelons
on Saturday street corners,


staccato carrot slices laughing
in orange jello,
a meager feast;


furrow-browed widows whispering
on narrow cemetery roads
shouldering rented sprinkling cans
and small packs of fertilizer, replenishment


for the plots of the earth
under which their spouses grow in holiness.


In your voice today:
the aching joys of paradise,
a mother still waiting
with sighing arms open
for her son.