Vox Populi

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Dawn Potter: About Mothers

Is it better to laugh with the little boys on the bus
gobbling Cheez-Its at 6 a.m., or to weep over the kingfisher
dropping like a stone into the poisoned waters of Connecticut?

What of the little foxes in their black stockings
peeking around the edge of the shed
as my mother trudges toward death?

Their bright faces, eager to tear into the hen
their mother steals from the chicken house.
My mother’s tears when she wakes to find the nest empty.

How can I judge the worth of a brooding life?
In a busy restaurant my giant son leans his head on my shoulder,
and I am his mother again, lifting his memory into my arms.

There is no time that is not loss.


Copyright 2022 Dawn Potter

Dawn Potter directs the Frost Place Conference on Poetry and Teaching, held each summer at Robert Frost’s home in Franconia, New Hampshire. Her many books include Accidental Hymn (Deerbrook, 2022).

4 comments on “Dawn Potter: About Mothers

  1. Lisa Zimmerman
    August 23, 2022

    That ending though💔

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Barbara Huntington
    August 22, 2022


    Liked by 1 person

  3. Rose Mary Boehm
    August 22, 2022

    A most powerful and memorable poem. Excellent. Shall read it again right away.

    Liked by 1 person

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This entry was posted on August 22, 2022 by in Environmentalism, Poetry and tagged , , , .

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