Great Expectations

Lynne Burnett OrderGX47A3NT2C_0155

My mother and I are like the hands of a clock –
she, the seconds that move my minute
and I, the minutes that move her hour.

I was born on her twenty-first birthday.

We are always walking hand in hand
between the astonished faces of
what’s to come and what has been.

This poem first appeared in North Shore Magazine (14 years ago!). Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms out there, especially mine!

It Rains For Him

Heavy Downpour
Heavy Downpour — Image by © Anthony Redpath/Corbis

who loves it more than sunshine,
the streets so wet tonight, they are tongues
babbling in the dark—glossolalia—
they gleam baptismal, it’s like
the slosh of good wine in the mouth,
how many ways can it be praised? and
how auspicious!—easier to leave the house
he was born in twenty-one years earlier
when drop by drop it taps on every window
calling his name, and out he goes for a walk
(like having a bath sprinkled with Dead
Sea salts, he can’t help but wallow in it)
such a glad soak, hair dripping, shoes
squishing already reaching the corner
and look, the light is with him,
the interminable traffic has stopped,
the next step beckons—that wide avenue
known to swallow a man whole—
now’s when a mother crosses
her fingers—momentum will carry him
curb after curb walking on water like this.

This poem was first published in the Taos Journal of Poetry & Art in 2017 and is included in my chapbook “Irresistible”, forthcoming from Finishing Line Press in March. Copies are available for preorder here.