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  • Writer's pictureSharon Frances

I love you most

You build a monster from blocks

Like the one in your closet Pieces spread around you

I will probably step on one

While you are at school

You paint a dragon’s fire

Its tail down your arm

Spatters on your shirt

That will probably stain

While in the wash

I cook, clean, drive you

I pack lunches, hold you

When you cry

Hours of homework

Where do the hours go

Sometimes there is

no time for me

Surrounded by you

When I haven’t showered, forgot to eat

Didn’t drink because your bottle was empty

And I gave you mine

I give you everything

Because you are everything

You call out, your face scrunched

startled by a dream

Sleepy eyes look into mine

And I don’t know much

When you ask me about death

Or what’s at the bottom of the ocean

I kiss your forehead and hold us close

Breathe you in, I love you most

I was scared you whisper.

I am scared too, I don’t say.

What if I’m not good enough

What if I don’t stand up for you

What if I don’t teach you what you need

then you grow up

and leave me--

when you leave me--

Maybe I could keep you little forever

Because you teach me, you need me

You show me


You are afraid about monsters and death and endings

and fall asleep anyway

You make piles and stains and don’t care

Because life is messy.

You fall and I can’t catch you

In the deep waters of life, through my fingers

But you paddle, dip down, rise up

I learn from you

In the dark of night

Through monsters and dragons

You whisper,

so certain:

Tomorrow, let’s play in the rain.

No shoes, stomp in puddles.

Lean into the wind.

Of course.

I hold you close

I love you most

These poems are part of the Cultivating Poetry Project, in which I write for those who need poems for many reasons in their lives, including those in parenthood, grief and loss, chronic pain and fatigue, and those in need of a change or healing.

All poems and images are the property of the poet, Sharon Frances.

Do not use in part or whole without permission.

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