At 4:01 in the morning
      I awake, exactly
58 years of life on earth
       and this the first
       that she who brought me to it,
              barely breathing both,
will not call
       and wish me
              happy birthday, son.

Deep in the darkness
       of parting
how strange it feels.  To be severed
       again. Now somehow adrift

I crouch on the western shore,
        boatless and simian, staring
              into invisible distance.

Has she gone there
as the sun nightly goes
to die?
Or she traveling still?

Will she find familiar flowers
there? Streams, or trees?
       Or a son
              who went before?

 Did her mother wait for her?
Will she wait for me?

Will Kirkland
October 17, 2001