in the gazebo

by Bozena Helena Mazur-Nowak
for my Mother, Danuta, in Heaven


a warm September day,
the thirteenth,
your birthday, Mom
smell of coffee on the terrace
sun is frolicking in the asters

there is a pergola in the middle of the orchard
entwined with wild ivy
you are sitting in a rocking chair
squinting your eyes to the sun
and smiling to yourself

how do you measure the past
that burned in a furnace of loss
how do you embrace the seasons of oblivion
what pattern do you cut from the fabric of longing
I look at you from a distance
and regret all those lost years

you rock in your chair and eat an apple
I just need to cross the orchard
and I could nestle in your arms again
feel the soothing warmth
listen to the heart beat
just like when I was a child

a sudden gust of wind
brought clouds of mourning
shadow fell across the aster
I gaze back at the gazebo
and know now that you are not there

my heart flutters
it refuses to accept
I close my eyes; tears flow
you are trapped under my eyelids,
Mom
and you have a warm place in my heart
Mom …

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