Literary Mama writing about the many faces of motherhood
Putting a Crying Baby to Sleep

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Like blowing out a trick birthday candle.
Like turning non-fat milk into butter.

It's like taking a Zumba class with Richard Simmons after a second cup of coffee.
It's like shushing a marching band in the library.

You are water spraying from a hose
and I am the drenched gardener fumbling for the spigot.
You are the vacuum cleaner tube
and I am the sock suctioned at its mouth.
I am the cigarette
and you've got the shakes.

It takes so long
two new pronouns are invented
an oak tree grows another ring
the Senate passes a bill.

When you doze off
you're a dew-drop on a spire of grass
an overblown balloon brushing a needle.

When your breathing finally deepens in the dark morning
I'm flat sourdough
a limp broken stem
a frayed violin string

and you're a loaf of sweet bread
fuzz on a dandelion
a small harp tucked in its soft bed.


January Pearson lives in Southern California with her husband and two daughters. She teaches at Purdue Global University. Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in publications, such as Notre Dame Review, Atlanta Review, Valparaiso Literary Review, Third Wednesday, Journal of American Poetry, and The Cape Rock Review.


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You've got it, captured perfectly!