sister

“Sister,” “The Moment and “Play it Again”

In Issue 56 by Hope Cotter

sister
Photo by Frank Albrecht on Unsplash

Sister

You taught me how to say and spell my name

On an old wooden dresser at our farm house

You pointed to herbs in the garden, parsley and oregano

We put on old dresses and Dad's ties

We sat stoic at Aunt Bee's Easter table, fearful of breaking

Dishes and hearts and the code of manners

That we sisters as young women should be good

within that word, we made our own pact

We polished our boots, our Dad's boots, hardened from working

Construction and destruction of the old things to make new things

For long walks in lush forests, riding horses and planting for summer

That you hauled up the water from the deep well to cool us

Our wild curly hair dipped in those water buckets to cool hot head of July

Freedoms before the numbing routine of school

We held our secrets like candies to save and share

One by one, they melted away into the bigger world

When the wild children we were, became the women we are now

The Moment

like glass shattering

Cinematic and breathtaking

This was the super moment beyond

All other moments

The eraser of all practice

This would be permanent.

like a bonfire under

A new moon when

Secrets feel safe to come out

And within that night

A rush of all I ever said no to

Ran off the magical cliff into the ocean

Returning to the origin in desperation

say, yes?  Finally and finally

Returning to myself

Play it Again

I play the piano

next to your easy chair

You read the paper in

A company shirt, carpenter pants

Between the politics and weather

I know you listen, you say

Play it again, please

I dance with you

Under my wedding tent

Twirl, spin, dip, laugh

melancholy letting go

And welcome triumph

Keep a song in your heart

A smile on your face

Play it again, please

I sit with you

the northeast train

With my iPhone

Explaining urban life

Is complicated

and show you

A video of your grandbabies

his laughter says

Play it again, please

I walk with you

In fields of oak, maple, pine

Backlit by a red sun and

The pace is slower

than it was

A sighting of clover

under a mushroom

see you hold sacred

the natural world

Play it again, please

About the Author

Hope Cotter

Hope Cotter is an author and writer. She is a graduate of New York University. She lives in Hopewell, NJ with her husband, three sons and peacock. She has been published in Wingless Dreamer, Poets Choice's and other publications. She loves the smell of old books and new ideas.

Read more work by Hope Cotter .