Fingers and toes begin like kernels of corn and pods of peas, making
the grown ones giggle and coo. I never knew any of you
when the world introduced you and you were so new. God kept count
of each inhale that brought you closer to Fate and every exhale
that propelled you closer to Heaven. I counted on my fingers
and then my toes, the number of times I found you
through the laughter of your words, hiding in the shed to ward off the rooster
or skating down the thin ice on the smallest of hills, your shoe soles
not enough to keep you rooted and upright. The hands that dug
the ditch so well that could never be promoted. The gentle man
that played cards at the firehouse, waiting for a turn at the hose.
The many that have scattered seeds that scattered seeds, or fell
where they would never germinate. Each of you will harvest me
like a fruit so ripe on the vine, a blossom that conquers Winter.
And in this way I will be yours. I will be yours as I so rarely was
since the beginning of my day.