Beads of glass, yellow, purple, gold, teal, red, silver:
enough or too much to gather into love?
I palm the metal geometrics, crystals,
varigated stones, ceramic spheres, hemp cord
and luminous silky floss.
Later at a fabric store two sharp-eyed saleswomen
prod me: what am I making, and I likely need this, that.
The experts press against the counter, piecing
their ideas deftly from my heap and jumble.
My lovely fat quarters of cloth; I pull them close.
I pick them up, considering the visions
I took from the warp and weft of happy dreams.
Nothing can mar the mental surface tension
beneath which deeper things stir like fishes;
ideas gather momentum, about to break through.
Patience is my way for this creating; I see, gather, wait.
I have no schematics for success.
My craftsy friend who brought me here
smiles indulgently. But I am not making
just any holiday project.
These mounds of colors-textures-shapes
are meant to reflect five hearts, ones that help power my own.
The tiny trinkets and beads rustling in the bag
will be stitched and knotted in praise
of the vivid lives of my children.
Just as when they first arrived as blood and bone–
each tenuous (as it was hard for me to make children)
but charged, triumphant, embraced–
I will consider these bits of beauty, discover more patterns.
I still am learning the ways of each soul. I am guessing as I go.
There will be forms and colors, whatever feels needed
and what might be desired.
My hands will work as the light scents
of cotton and stone, silk and copper calm me.
What my fingers can make–
these aging fingers full of lines, splits, callous–
will be true to what I know, and bright with hope.
If I do not fail to bring inspiration to fruition
there will be five wall hangings, at best unschooled,
even clumsy, madcap–yet strung together as
small collections of care and delight.
And perhaps they will bring them close
then hang them up,
gaze a moment and think,
there it is: love.