Magi and Other Poems



the nativity set is still packed away
in a tupperware container I cannot find

and the tree     it’s almost too big
for the room

what was I thinking

I don’t have enough
to fill those empty branches

my brother-in-law in the hospital bed
sometimes did not know

who I was      he would become

suddenly polite     like I was just
some stranger visiting

after the biopsy his head was shaved
and swaddled in bandages

for a while he and my sister
thought there would be a different ending

a miraculous surgeon
if they could travel far enough

away to find him     there were holes

in his sentences backfilled with I’m scared

still he had an opinion
about what kind of mobile

I should buy my baby         what colors
should spin above her in the dark

I got the one he said and feel

it is a gift now that he is gone

when I look up and all the birds
are tangled together

and they can’t navigate either

still the baby pointing up at them
is like a message
People on couch
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