MAGNIFICAT a Poem by Elizabeth I. Riseden

Sierra and Sage stand
on the upended blue tub
beneath fluttering crab
apple blossoms
arms reaching, harvesting.
I rush, mold quick cookies
to celebrate Mothers Day.
Why don’t I stop? Honor small hands
picking, worshiping apple pink
outdoors more than indoor
seduction of sweet?

Distractions; barrel, blossoms,
gray day warm enough to pick;
oven, sugar, fat, flour
chocolate, stirred in a frenzy
of forgetting that we work
in fragility---shaping, mixing, picking---
essentially female
while the kids’ war-
deployed Daddy could be dead

Activity---meditation, 4H, lawn
planted, borders grounded,
top soil smoothed by clouds
in rain of spring, no life but what
we accomplish, no hope but our
nurturing. Movements among tears
between outbursts, angry or
defeated. And, from my age,
how do I abide, plant hope
within this destruction?

by Elizabeth I. Riseden