Seed

And the seed bunches hung in the summer trees on branches that swung in the wind, it was the summer when everywhere you went you heard the cries of newborn …

Artwork by Tine Modeweg-Hansen

And the seed bunches hung in the summer trees
on branches that swung in the wind,
it was the summer when everywhere you went
you heard the cries of newborn babies
out of open windows, or from behind fences
around private gardens, everywhere you went
there was a mother on the other
side of the wall

And the seed bunches tossed in the wind
and you remembered the catalpas, their blooms
like spilled popcorn in the grass,
you remembered a dizzy old dress,
some silliness with a mattress on a roof
(no jumping back from memory
on its coiled spring,
jumping-jack memory
that says Boo!)
you remembered the chestnut that sprouted
in the children’s sandbox one spring,
the sapling you nurtured in a flowerpot,
then in a bucket, then in a dug bed
where it grew to a full-size tree
that blossoms now each year
in front of a house no longer yours

And the seed bunches tossed in the wind
on branches that swung and heaved,
it was the summer that came in the wake
of a birdless winter, first of the birdless winters,
it was the summer when everywhere you went
you heard the cries of newborns, and you felt
how all had changed, how all was changing,
summer of darkening horizons,
morrows gone treacherous,
a world dividing quickly
into King of the Castle
and Dirty Rascal

And you called out in your heart,
for the first time, to one on the way.
Impending, unexpected, cloud-bound child,
you are barrelling towards me.

This appeared in the January/February 2015 issue.

Robyn Sarah
Robyn Sarah will publish a new collection, My Shoes Are Killing Me, in April.
Tine Modeweg-Hansen
Tine Modeweg-Hansen has illustrated more than twenty Danish children’s books.

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