In the silent sun of Friday afternoon in Albuquerque,
A doctor’s paper shoe -boots shuffled into my room.
He placed my fingers around the tiniest creature.
Noisy in this quiet was Jennifer Dawn.
In the miniature baby-box, surrounded by monster machines,
she moved like a sixties rock-and-roll dancer.
Miniature mittens halted her hands from removing tubes.
She longed to make her extraordinary noise in the world.
Desperately, I needed to hear her and hold her.
I was a blind mother with overwhelming fears.
dramatic possibilities: miscarriage, stillbirth, death or disappointments.
Miracles happened. The music played on.
By Tuesday, tubes and restrictions were removed.
This noisy infant was in my arms, screeching her song.
Home, the alarm clock rang throughout long nights.
She slept through feedings, wimpering, sucking, breathing.
Sounds sang out in the silence of spring’s desert dawns.
I crawled on the carpet, alert for minor movements.
She traveled by fanny, falling asleep in corners.
In her bucket on the kitchen table,
her mouth and mushed bananas inevitably met.
“Yum-yum,” she mumbled, spiritedly, spitting a mouthful back at me.
“Momma! Momma!” she screamed excitedly,
running down the sidewalk outside my classroom
Her sounds were songs on sultry September afternoons.
She grabbed my long white cane, imitating Momma.
How beautiful she was. Vision unnecessary.
When ocean waves knocked her down, I heard her comically rise, spitting and sputtering.
When she jumped from the fishing boat at Elephant Butte, I followed.
She read to me from the beginning; books were music.
Today, we read in pubs, in New York City.
she reads her poetry and mine; we read together.
Words have sounds which move me.
On one April first, that first sound was a song, impacting forever.
She still sings to me!