thing about babies & change

1. the thing about babies is that you don’t know how much, exactly

is gonna change,

besides, say, everything in the practical, emotional,

physical, …


but you don’t really know

so much like

even now on my third,

how will the labor & delivery go

how short, how long,

how much breath will i be able to pull in

between each surging contraction, each wave pulling us to

each beach

& will my focus be so much better than the last times

i birthed?

how much will i change?


will her eyes be lighter than my eldest daughter’s

hair curly curly or straight

ahead eyes heart serious yet glimmering-

will i rest in the calm of dim lights

and how much sleep will i remember

i can go without?

how much will my heart mush to see

brothers and sisters meeting


for the first time?


how tired, how languid, flushed with fatigue and love will i be?

so i’m doing these things now,

a sitting, ripening plum,

halfway between industry and rest,

near-continual heartburn

to the occasional forgetting i’m even pregnant

somehow maybe only in sleep.

(who am i kidding? i’m restless and big).


and today we built cupcakes sanded with sugar,

read three books before 7:30, dishes soaped and put away;

today we burried 48 morning glory, nurtured and snipped spreading leaves,

and i was patient, more than before.


we laundered, we showered,

created, & put away.

killed one harmful caterpillar

curled up in leaves like a sleeping bag;

i rescued one spider and carried him outside.

we sang lots of songs and i know we sure danced,

laughter pooling inside and out, onto the patio, out to the driveway and back.


11. every day is the same and yet so very different

i can tell time is folding and growing our family

and stretching our long legs.


my memories sugar on the counter from this afternoon,

a coating that sticks to the floorboards and each uncovered little toe

like his little hairs that fell off his head and clung to his neck,


i want to remember everything before the change and now


111. when i shave my legs, i wonder if it’ll be the last time before

i work so hard to see my newest babe


and when i apply mascara, three generous coats on dark

lashes, i wonder how long before i am doing up my eyes again

once baby comes? that is, how long before i regain momentum & the balance

to pull a straight line, a carved out time


altogether, me.

IMG_1387 (2)

i wonder each day what time line, what story we will say

when describing the moon, the errands, the metaphors

the field in which you were born

from conversation bubbling with “i love my family”,

to a small argument, perhaps, with a little speck of feeling

lonely or weightless

within the movement of infinite details and ohmy



infinite process

all moving towards birth


who really is ready and who just takes

a couple hundred deep breaths?


i eat three more mini cupcakes before bed

drink anything fizzy, wonder about each pull,

every sensation

and smile, try

to swing legs and hips to each side–

remember the change before and after this night.


remember the air, all the was done and spoken

in each room.


A Day of Soup & Spilling News

The day I told my mom of a new child here growing here was the day I pedaled to buy chervil and thyme, more carrots and bouillabaisse. It was the day I walked my husband to the drive and into the street and acknowledged with tears that with my telling her, I’d feel more weightless– more joy.


I cried up the hill, bicycling a basket full of warm baguette, the bottles of olive oil and herbs, all of spring and promises of summer, the cozy coming of winter, all for the soup to gather in fall. And I said, “I’m so glad you’re in charge of birth and death”. The trust in pedaling with an eight week, six-day-old baby, living inside.

(Which is the same day I bought these purple and brown irises home. Delicate purple and golden browns like Champagne and chanterelles. I brought the iris pots home, three of them for my 500 yen, 50 yen change, 3 of them for my garden, which is the same day I bought bubbly apple juice from France to celebrate a Shabbat, a growing with family). Celebrating is feeling alive.

I have to get through the telling. The worry that she won’t be pleased with the steps of my life, my ordered recipe. Peppermint tea for her and I pour out my words. Out come the pictures of a little bean in an ultrasound. It is all, extraordinarily, smooth.

We’re all here–iris outside the front step, and all that will be held in my body. Joy soothes the weary, all the jumpy nerves. A bouquet of leaves swirling and moss earth fragrant November. It’s a day we all want soup. It’s the day to make my mother tea and tell her our news.



Yes, the day I made a fall soup is the day I spilled the news to my sister, too, her driving, “I am pregnant”. There is another growing child and she whooped and cheered and all my anxiety cleared.

That’s what I’ve been– clenched, sad, afraid I’d not get some needed ingredient. And now it’s the day of a thousand good breaths and the soup called relief which I’ll start right now. Here, in my life, are all the right people to love.

Now, now I can get excited. We’re all onboard and feeling warm.


The best things take time and must be gathered courageously.