Literary Mama writing about the many faces of motherhood

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for Eleanor and Vivian

Even as cubs, my granddaughters
guard me, though they know no grief
or brokenness, no empty house jangling,
tap at death's gate. They preen their pelts,
crouch on ready haunches in halogen glare—
the unstoppable traffic, intentional swerve,
sweet dish of poison. They prowl for me,
howl with me in the spilt strawberry moon,
raw-hearted tributes left on my stoop.
I shall fear no evil, their shadows large ahead,
behind. I shall not falter in age or decline,
for the path they prepare is clothed in light.

Hear them answer blood's love call,
snag in their teeth the arrowed night.

Linda Parsons is the reviews editor for Pine Mountain Sand & Gravel and has contributed to The Georgia Review, Iowa Review, Prairie Schooner, Southern Poetry Review, The Chattahoochee Review, Shenandoah, among many other journals and anthologies. Her latest poetry collection is This Shaky Earth, and she is playwright-in-residence for The Hammer Ensemble, the social justice wing of Flying Anvil Theatre in Knoxville, Tennessee.

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