Three

raspberry

Swing me high, swing me low.

Your strong, warm hands launch me floor-to-ceiling.

Past your white work shirt, 5:30 fatigue, and heartfelt laughter.

Your mom, my mom, and me.

Three generations gather in the Zenith raspberry patch.

Aprons, sky-high canes, and ruby-tipped fingers.

Bulging bowls bubble and burp.

Stirring and steam settles and waits to glide across fresh-baked bread.

The Four Freshman sing after stories and prayers.

We use curtain toggles for microphones and take turns singing the lead.

You always win at Clue,

but I don’t care because I’ll do anything to be with you.

Three precious are gone, but gone just a bit.

So much still abides here with me.

You sent me a gift from your own time and space –

you’re not by my side, but you’re not far away.

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