Poetry May 2010

Parents

More

What do any of us know about our parents,
               separate or together? My mother kept the house
in order, prepared food, wore the epinetron smooth
               rolling the threads, the skeins of daily love.
She wove our clothes, played knucklebones, snakes & ladders,
               lined up with other women at the well,
walked home balancing the vase on her head
               as she balanced our family, the oikos.
Like most parents she hid her care, sadness, the arguments
               with my father heading off on another odyssey.
Da played dead when I stabbed him, let me
               wear his helmet, turned into a tickle monster.
Ma scolded him for exciting me before bed.
               I suppose they were like most parents. What do I know?
I had no others. They were as mysterious as the night sky,
               the Islands of the Blest, the sea, Hades, the god
hidden within the darkness of the forbidden inner temple.

Greg Delanty’s recent books include The Ship of Birth (2007) and Collected Poems, 1986–2006. He teaches at Saint Michael’s College, in Vermont.
Jump to comments
Presented by

Greg Delanty is an Irish poet who teaches at Saint Michael's College in Vermont. His latest book of poems is The Greek Anthology, Book XVII, which will be released in the U.S. in 2015 as Book Seventeen

Get Today's Top Stories in Your Inbox (preview)

The Ghost Trains of America

Can a band of locomotive experts save vintage railcars from ruin?


Elsewhere on the web

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register. blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

Why Did I Study Physics?

Using hand-drawn cartoons to explain an academic passion

Video

What If Emoji Lived Among Us?

A whimsical ad imagines what life would be like if emoji were real.

Video

Living Alone on a Sailboat

"If you think I'm a dirtbag, then you don't understand the lifestyle."

Video

How Is Social Media Changing Journalism?

How new platforms are transforming radio, TV, print, and digital

Video

The Place Where Silent Movies Sing

How an antique, wind-powered pipe organ brings films to life

Feature

The Future of Iced Coffee

Are artisan businesses like Blue Bottle doomed to fail when they go mainstream?

Writers

Up
Down

More in Entertainment

More back issues, Sept 1995 to present.

Just In