Poems by Jacqueline Osherow
At the Wailing Wall
Spring Sonnet, with my sister’s favorite bit of Deborah
There’s mercy in the decades as they pass,
reducing years of ache to a single afternoon
beneath a cherry tree in a terraced garden:
the cherries seem to ripen while we gaze,
darkening as sunlight starts to fade.
You’re talking; I’m waiting for you to realize
what you won’t admit for another decade:
love is not a word I wouldn’t use
you’ll say once I’ve had daughters, you, a son.
Now there’s another decade gone
and I have yet to hear of love
without some qualifier, some double negative.
Perhaps I’ve stifled it? It’s getting late;
no sign of ripeness, just failing light.