Everything went back to normal:
Grandma dead again, me
eyeing the farmer’s sons,
trying to pull off my gloves
as roughly as they did theirs.
Mom no longer lamented
the eye surgery’s failure,
the victory of astigmatism.
The night’s averse stripped
away the bridal snow.
I looked out the window at the
rubbery blacktop
and thought of the war between
my grandmother’s faith
and her devotion to me.
I thought of my mother’s sacrifices,
including her voice, neglected
for years. At Christmas,
sitting next to me on the piano
bench, she looked through
bifocals and read sheet
music, silently relieved.
She felt naked, without so
much as a swaddling cloth,
the few days she seemed
to have outgrown her glasses.
We both started to feel
the rapport and rivalry
between eyes and lenses,
faith and devotion, aversion
and flood.

Timothy Robbins

Timothy Robbins has been teaching ESL and loving it for 27 years. He has been a regular contributor to Hanging Loose since 1978. His collection Denny’s Arbor Vitae was published by Adelaide Books in 2017. Another collection, Carrying Bodies, will be published by Main Street Rag Press in 2018. Timothy lives with his husband (a brilliant mathematician) of twenty years in Kenosha, Wisconsin.