This room has so much mercy in it
I sit back down. What do you mean?
The goodness of it...
the books, the words
that fall from the shelves
The quiet ... the softness ... and poetry
The whole aura of this place
With Bach playing in the background?
Yes and the bananas ...
There’s a certain tenderness in bananas
In the oatmeal
with the milk poured over it?
Yes, and the picture in front of the Freud books
it has a certain peacefulness to it
The one of you and Butchie?
Yes, on the porch,
in the sun.
We’re almost praying
Yes, praying ...
for things future … for things past ...
I've always thought of the kitchen table in our library/family/everything-in-it room as a crowded mess. Not until now and this conversation with my husband, tired and infirm, have I considered that there could be anything as grand or as simple as mercy here in our scrambled lives.
Esther Altshul Helfgott