It is mid-October. The trees are in
their autumnal glory (red, yellow-green,
orange) outside the classroom where students
take the mid-term, sniffling softly as if
identifying lines from Blake or Keats
was such sweet sorrow, summoned up in words
they never saw before. I am thinking
of my parents, of the six decades they’ve
been together, of the thirty thousand
meals they’ve eaten in the kitchen, of the
more than twenty thousand nights they’ve slept
under the same roof. I am wondering
who could have fashioned the test that would have
predicted this success? Who could have known?
Poem copyright ©2010 by Joyce Sutphen, whose most recent book of poetry is First Words, Red Dragonfly Press, 2010. Poem reprinted by permission of Joyce Sutphen.