Friday, September 4, 2009

Strangely Parted


To my children
I’ve always been old.
A tree never the sapling.

A sunset
without the sunrise.
As far as they’re concerned

my life began mid-stream
– a ford for them to cross
over in safety.

Like photos I’ve seen
of my own mother
taken before I was born,

when she was twenty-one
and a stranger wearing shoes
and a coat I’d never seen

before, her hair young,
springy, strangely parted
to the side. Girlish,

she’s as thin as a parcel
still wrapped-up, smiling
an oddly unencumbered smile.

Kay McKenzie Cooke

Seeing I'm on a camera/poetry jag here's another one. Cooke’s approach is familiar territory, the poet as participant. Photos freeze a moment of time. There was time before it was taken. And time after. The mother’s unencumbered smile and her own experience as a daughter and then as a mother is a reminder of the passage of the generations.

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