In California after eating
they called up to offer a greeting,
their plates filled with beans and broccoli
ours with roast beef and mashed potatoes.
We passed the telephone back and forth,
discussing children and work; of course,
we spoke of weather and summer plans,
the price of groceries and minivans,
and then of mom, who now lives alone
in that big house, her children all grown.
We discussed if this year we would meet,
compared our schedules, and each month’s heat.
They want to visit, and spend a week –
catch up on all the news, so to speak.
I wonder sometimes if the link we share
is stronger because of distance there;
We meet rarely, just when someone dies,
and talks like these are a big surprise.
California, it has been so long
and I have grown up since I’ve been gone.
They just keep on talking in my ear;
although their voices are nice to hear,
I hand the warm handset to my wife,
thinking of Easter, and of new life.
11 APR 2004