Baby on the Big Swing

Water’s pooling everywhere.
A week of summer rain:
tomato vines have doubled length 
and the wood chips are bursting 
into mushroom. 

He and I become one 
pendulum, sweating 
into one another’s clothes. 
His sixteen pounds, all 
belly, brain and bone, 
lift away from
my chest at each 
inflection. Hot,
the tiny head rolls 
back and forth
over my collar. 
One meaty little fist
finds the chain. 

The rain 
comes back on pale 
and sweet, caressing 
everything– my arms, 
the naked head 
beneath my chin, 
the little girl 

who throws her face 
into the spray, 
eyes closed, 
singing,
I’m in wonderland!

The babe falls silent,
surrenders to the sway
and lift, the sway
and lift, the water. 

His sisters swing
beside us, shouting,
Look how high!
Look how high!

Photo by Christine Renard from Pexels

Pure and Fleeting

Lean your forehead
into mine. Encircle
me in arms and snare
one fist at the nape 
of my neck.
Then,

scream. Unleash
a window-cracking
pterodactyl screech
right in my face as you 
spew a gutload of hot,
curdled breastmilk
down my shirt. 
Then,

smile. Throw your gums
wide open to display 
the milk-chunks
clinging to your 
tongue. 

Rip that fistful of hair 
from the base of my scalp 
as your laugh 
breaks over me.
Ouch! Fuck!
Little angel– 
no one else
can love me 
like you do. 

Shabbat Shalom, y’all. 😁

Shalom Bayit

You enter your bedroom.

It is dark, and I

am inside, singing

swaying with 

your infant son

against my chest. I 

am ten years 

younger 

than your wife 

and my voice is soft

and lullabye-pretty.

.

You move quickly 

into and out. I

turn my back, eyes

latching on the eyelids

drooping in my arms.

.

I mean you no harm 

and you mean me no harm. 

You take your shirt, 

go, and I continue, 

rocking in the dark room, 

singing.

.

(Shalom Bayit is a Jewish value. It translates to “peace in the home”, and describes familial wholeness and healthy connection in a marriage.)