Marie Howe




Waiting at the River

Sometimes I’m tired of being a mother, weary of holding her in my 
mind, her words brighter than mine, the light’s movement on the 
rock. Look, I say, Listen, to what my daughter said. (Tired of 
being) Reasonable and calm, answering to Mom, and how sweet 
(the sound) my name in her mouth, her mouth on my name, her 
mouth is not my mouth, her mind (not my). Her body has too many 
bites on it (too many) scratched. I’m the post she touches and 
leaves, and (before she) leaves (I’m) the base she runs to, and 
pushes off from: transparent home, ignored, rebuilt, undone, 
restored (all) without her knowing, waiting to catch the shine off 
her hair as she rounds the (watery) bend in the river, stepping 
among the stones. I stand up (waving), stretch and stand up, to 
show her where I am.