Poetry Porch: Poetry


by Patricia L. Hamilton

When a woman finds a lump, she begins making lists:
clothes to drop at the dry-cleaner,
bills falling due, upcoming birthdays,
what to buy the West Coast relatives for Christmas;

              the first-chair French horn player in district honor band
              the lanky basketball guard with the untamable cowlick
              the chemistry major who splurged on an orchid corsage

insurance claim filing deadlines, documents to download,
prescriptions, passwords for online accounts,
access codes, the pest control schedule,
and all dental appointments for six months;

              sweeping snow-angel wings under a star-sprinkled sky
              swinging out over the lake’s deep dazzle on an old tractor tire
              skimming toward Diamond Head, backlit by the city’s glow

casserole recipes easily doubled and frozen,
names of carpool drivers, babysitters’ numbers,
the dates of the children’s immunizations,
their t-shirt and shoe sizes and favorite desserts;

              drenched by scent of orange blossoms in full flower
              fired by the last gold light pooling on the bed
              soothed by the idle murmur of willows outside the window

where Nonna’s amethyst necklace is tucked away,
who gets her pearl earrings, where the will is filed,
what’s on the organ donor card, and who’s invited to the party
if the pathology report comes back clean.

Copyright © 2016 by Patricia L. Hamilton.