This year Marie drives back and forth
from the hospital room of her dying friend
to the office of the adoption agency.
I bet sometimes she doesn’t know
What threshold she is waiting at—
the hand of her sick friend, hot with fever;
the theoretical baby just a lot of paperwork so far.
But next year she might be standing by a grave,
wearing black with a splash of
banana vomit on it,
the little girl just starting to say Sesame Street
and Cappuccino latte grand Mommy.
The future ours for a while to hold, with its heaviness—
and hope moving from one location to another
like the holy ghost that it is.
“Migration” by Tony Hoagland
from What Narcissism Means To Me © Graywolf Press, 2003.