The First Time We Hear the Coyotes After a Long Winter
I leave the window open,
no matter how cold,
so we can hear them
as she falls asleep,
high pitched and sweet.
Later as the rest of the house sleeps
I think about each choice I have made,
what I did and what else I could have done.
Maybe if I had made another choice
things would be better, perfect even.
Or maybe we would still be here in this,
or some very similar, uncomfortable place.
So I try to listen to a friend who tells me,
You are one hell of a mother,
and this time I am glad
to be alone and awake at this hour.
I have missed this song.
After falling head first
into her, into what she made me
with no thought of what would happen
if I drown,
I sink slowly
enjoying the fall.
For days and weeks and months
I swim happily underwater
not realizing how much
I miss the air.
I find some essence which was hibernating,
resting quietly, waiting for me to
morph into some altogether
one who has already learned how to be both.
Born and raised in Portland Oregon, Susan Sweetland Garay currently lives in the Willamette Valley with her husband and daughter where she works in the vineyard industry. She has had poetry and photography published in a variety of journals, online and in print. Her first full-length poetry collection, Approximate Tuesday, was published in 2013 and she was nominated for a Pushcart Prize in 2014. More of her work can be found at susansweetlandgaray.wordpress.com