Literary Mama writing about the many faces of motherhood
Outside Taliano’s

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The near-full moon is shining through thin clouds and thick
leaves of the old magnolia.
We pace the short stretch of sidewalk, down and back
my one-year-old son
in soft pajamas, warm head settled against my chest.
The restaurant was too loud,
the food for our gathering of twelve too slow. Grandparents, parents
and children celebrating
but anniversaries mean nothing to babies and nothing
to me right now. We two,
mother and child, bobbed in an eddy outside the current
of conversation. I made a face
of regret as we slipped out of the too-bright room overtopped
with talking,
but felt none. It's easier to be alone together. We breathe in
the quiet, his limbs
slumping deeper into my arms as we turn—me, my son, the magnolia,
the darkness and the moon.

Nina Prater is a soil health specialist with the National Center for Appropriate Technology. She, her husband and two children live on a small farm in the Ozark Mountains of Arkansas. She received her B.A. from William Smith College in English and Environmental Science and her M.S. from the University of Arkansas in Soil Science. She writes poetry and essays.

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