wonder and worry and making ends meet

To Goodwill tonight

For a kid’s Christmas sweater and

just to get out of the house

And be together and breathe a little better

In a big space filled with clothes and books,

Toys, lamps, skis, pots and pans,

And furniture.

Everything so beautifully worn,

Full of life,

Imperfect.

And calling to me.

S.B. and Oogie found a tiny, warm vest

Covered in cheetah print.

A pair of pink leggings.

A birdbath.

Little Man found a hockey stick,

A plastic dagger, a stuffed horse.

I found a NITE STAND for $9.99

That I’m sure was hers—

The elderly lady I sensed in House Wares—

That led me away

From a $4 yellow pressure cooker,

Past an end cap of coffee mugs and

To the wooden, 1940-something charmer

With dark finish, smooth round edges,

And a drawer lined with yellow, flowery wall paper.

Something like this—

Just an object saved from a thrift store—

Tells stories

Or holds secrets that draw us in.

These items somehow have always been ours.

Waiting

And whispering

In basements and attics and behind garage doors.

And as soon as we see them, we know it,

Feel reconnected, and we take them home.

To sit, not by my bed, as it did for her so many years ago—

Holding her Bible, her rings, her hairpins and teeth—

But to sit by the couch I come to at night

So my vodka tonic is not far from reach

And I can unwind,

Relax, and revel in the rest that arrives

After another long day of wonder and worry and making ends meet.


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