Letter to My Mother

Sometimes I forget you for days. I pack sandwiches in brown bags and iron patches on jeans. I wash dishes, steam rising in my kitchen that smells like bread. When I walk through the early morning fog, maybe I’ll arrive where you are. Yesterday, my vision blurred as highway miles clicked by. I had only imagined your hand poised to stroke my forehead as I slept. Each day I wake, unsurprised at your absence. It is the gray sweater, soft as a rabbit, I pull on against the chill. It is the field outside my window, lush with bright clover that ripples in the wind. Soon, the farmer will harvest it so he can plant his fields in spring.



Kathleen McGookey’s work has appeared in journals including Crazyhorse, Denver Quarterly, Epoch, Field, Indiana Review, Ploughshares, The Prose Poem:  An International Journal, Prairie Schooner, Quarterly West, Rhino, Seneca Review, and West Branch.  Her book Heart in a Jar was published by White Pine Press in Spring 2017.  She has also published two other books of poems,  two chapbooks and a book of translations of French poet Georges Godeau’s prose poems.