habitants

When broken, rebuilt
are entirely new children-

the people we play
              the ones we remember from a story or memory
in their shiny, forming hearts

like ghosts beneath the fingernails
we scratch at when there is an itch
on the brow, of fathers       

tender        of mothers and their dreams
even when      splintered from unkindness/

it is the mantle of yesterday, of those
we have loved and not our own

dreams and hope. And see,
when broken and like a child
again, so spectacularly

a life kinder than once known-now

we could be   brave
flowers are on
                      the table because we remembered

to walk to the garden every weekend/coffee
brews on Saturday morning
                          little feet already rushing under the sun.

My heart,

does a war rage outside
              the bedroom window? Are the people

who wage it                 Kind Folk?

I want to ask for a reprieve     tell the ants
making their way up the picnic basket, I

will be back tomorrow, cross
my heart.

When I blow upon my own hand
dust in the dim light is like
starshine/and so,

I look to no other. The children
receive our debt/ and the
debt we have paid

like lit paths we must have left
forging through the longer
nights, even when we,
like children

again.