Sunday, June 16, 2013

Domestic Arts

photoart: ralph murre

Domestic Arts
by Donna Hilbert

I am a young mother
so bored staying home
I agree to play Bridge
with my neighbors,
whom I suspect put up with me
to find a fourth to fill the table.

They are goddesses of domestic arts,
and between games hold forth
on finer points of decoupage, macramé
and the transformation of cans
into casseroles.

Still I am smug,
for I have gifts of my own:
precognitive dreams
and gift of the phone,
which I demonstrate by chanting
Mother Mother Mother Dear
call me now while my friends are here,
and when the phone rings
they are believers.

Because I love an audience,
I tell them my dreams:
how I see trash cans burning
the night before they burst in flame
behind my house,
how Papa’s heart attack
awakens me from sleep.
How I knew the night before she labored
Jan’s baby boy would be born dead.

Now the neighbors play three-handed games—
Pinochle, Euchre—
keep their children indoors,
cross against the light
when they see me coming.

~ first published in Tears in the Fence