Providence seems to be one of the words
That shouldn’t be mourned as it falls from fashion.
Goodbye to the notion that whatever happens
Is meant to happen, foreseen and approved
By a thoughtful heaven. A word that’s proven
Invaluable to the privileged when they’ve cautioned
The less-than-privileged to be content
With the portion that happenstance has assigned them.
It’s the work of providence that you were born
To a sharecropping family on a hardscrabble farm,
Not to the family that owns the land.

Goodbye to the word, and yet its disappearance
Might make it harder for the sharecropper’s daughter
To explain to her husband’s wealthy parents
Her reluctance to take a pill guaranteed
To make the baby boy she’s soon to bear
More handsome and clever than he would be otherwise.
Providential, meaning the baby for her
Is a gift meant to be welcomed as is, not a kit
To be assembled at home in the latest style.

A gift whether or not he later looks back
On his birth as providential or as a simple
Piece of good luck, providing him with a mother
Who would urge him to do the work
That pleased him most,
Work she believed he was meant to do.