Literary Mama writing about the many faces of motherhood
before father’s day

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somewhere between skim milk and applesauce
i remember:
i buy the cards.
i turn stuttering wheels on a cart filled
with groceries and girls
that wilt as they wait for me
to choose.
i hurry, because after four errands,
the clock is ticking on our patience,
the pin pulled from the grenade
and discarded somewhere between the gas pump
and the recycling bin.

i scan the rack, and amidst
Dad to Daughter,
From Your Little Girl,
i find a card for my husband to send
(one for him to receive)
and clatter toward the express lane.

i buy the cards,
but he sends them
with my reminder.
except when he doesn't,
except when they languish on the counter
all day until the mail's come and gone
and I explode:
he doesn't understand, as I do,
that it's too late.

MaryAnn McKibben Dana lives in northern Virginia with her husband, Robert, and two daughters (Caroline, age 4, and Margaret, seventeen months), with Bonus Baby on the way. A writer and minister, her work has appeared at mamazine, Literary Mama, and numerous print journals, as well as the books My Red Couch: And Other Stories on Seeking a Feminist Faith and Finding Calm in the Chaos.

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