To which sins shall I confess?
Panic when as an infant, you’d hold your breath and faint?
Complicity moving away from Grandpa?
Weakness, letting you visit your father who was still drinking?
I apologize
         for the dogs you did or didn’t like
         for shopping trips where you spent money like a Sheik
         for not punishing your $300 pre-Christmas phone bill
         for loving you when you were your least loveable.
We refract the light that spawns us
Blue permissiveness from black strictness
Green sprouts from shiny white bread
Time unearths our original sin,


I did not know when I birthed my son
that he would take my heart with him.
At night, desperate for rest
half asleep, barely present
I’d attempt to nurse him.
The choice frustrated us both.
One night when he cried, I took
him downstairs to my rocker,
made tea, made us comfortable
and realized he was my life.
He grew. I watched my heart
learn to walk, read
navigate friendships, school
and grieve a first love anew.
He became a man
who with his spouse created
three children into
whom he placed his heart.
Together, powerless but present
remembering our own youth
we watch their spirits grow
as they navigate their lives.
We’re participant and spectator both
since we freed our hearts
to beat, break and love
inside our children.