1 During her hospitalization, my mother recognizes me, says— the wide arms of the trees have lost their scope, and what were visions fade like chalk drawings. Today, the flapping in my right ear is quiet and I heard a woman in the kitchen talking about sweet green pears while a spider in the doorway, without me, wove its home in silk. Today, the faucet is not the mouth of God— it is water, and no matter how much I drink it will not make me holy. No, today the light coming through the window is pure, like when I was a girl and came upon a dead egret in a gutter and realized it would never lift, sing. Yes, it’s a day like that, and it is a little sad, really, that the arms of the trees are not laden with pears, that the spider has no need of my spinners, and the white bird in my mind, who being so lovingly beckoned, will not rise to the sun as the wind from its slow flapping turns into holy water over my shoulder. 2 Spending decades, denying my likeness— sidestepping her schizophrenia— like her lips, cheeks, I have inherited her need of stillness, for long cups of coffee while watching the incline of light shift across the yard, for tankas, uncluttered, and orchids, singular, unthorned. Although, she preferred a sky with either no clouds, bright, or one saturated in gray, I need the clutter of cumulus— their slow patterns passing, shapes in need of constant deciphering. 3 Because my daughters are growing. grief has stained and doubled my limbs. Each daughter I enfold in arms sees my blurred eyes as multi-faceted. Oh, spider-mother, they tease. Oh, spider-mother, they sing all their days over their sweeping, their small games with shells. And I lament more as their legs grow tall and thick, their hips spread like a terrible web in which a small life will stick, struggle like an angry fly. 4 The one I loved, despised, bury her by the leper or suicide, but let her hair stay unwoven. Above her the fox whelps its litter, noon-owls drop notes of stone. Under ground, over the aquifer, she is alone giving skin, bone to trunk and limb where egrets build stick homes. Silent, she still seeks out the nest, its pulse of shell, new tongues, gives milk to roots, feeds the young.