My Daughter’s Habit
A month’s respite doesn’t stop the heart
tilting in its cradle at the knock,
the scene replayed before I open the door.
I know from her expression what it is she wants,
but still she asks, and I fetch,
like a dog, hand over the score,
notice once more the half-moon scar
on the bone of her cheek.
The night swallows her shadow,
catches my sigh as she walks away.
I lean awhile against the door,
listen as the wind worries the trees,
smother the thought: to press
a pillow against my slipping heart.
“My Daughter’s Habit” first appeared in Magma Poetry, vol. 36, Winter 2006.