BIRTHDAY GREETINGS FOR KAREN
Yesterday, on the artificial new year,
we walked Franklin Park
trying out your new snow shoes.
Sadie ran in the snow, and I tracked
the sound of your feet crunching snow
with the video camera. We looked at each other
across the room through binoculars
and ate crab marinated in olive oil
and garlic. We ate apple pie
and ice cream. You took calls
from your daughters planning
birthday spaghetti. This is how life
goes, sometimes, for executives
in retirement. The internet, still new,
also sends birthday greetings
from corporations who also know
your date of birth and the fact
that you have money in your bank account.
You've been to El Salvador, built
a house for children modeled after
this house you made with me in dreams.
Four times this year we've crossed water
to Holden Village. We've traveled
with grand children, been in over our heads
again and again. We call this year
a dark time, but looking at you I see nothing
but light. We accompany each other
in the world. I ask you, How can this be?
2 January 2010