I am tired
is it of leavings?
Daughters have come from each coast
to choose book titles, record labels,
deciding which to take to a Seattle home or a Staten Island;
another daughter reaches for the plants
I cannot carry with me.

The grandchild reaches for me when she is sad
as I pack my trunk to leave.

Fifty years is a long time to live in a Midwest space,
seasons marked carefully by sun and rain and snow;
there are no friends to call when I reach Denver,
and oh! how I need friends to call;
there will be no classes to teach
and oh! I love to teach.

The waves along the lake beckon,
and I giggle through tears sometimes
when I tell the 15-year-old,
"I'll call every night."

My chin,
thrust forward,
may belie the pain,
my smile, shaking,
may hide the fear,
for I know I need to go.

for it is scary,
to believe God will take care of me in that new place;
but leaving.

Chicago, IL,
Hope Publishing House

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