a poem a day

A week of mothering.

A week of mothering a teenaged girl
will teach a woman like me a lot:
like how unlike them I am, these women
who drive carpool caravans and make sure
Teacher Appreciation Day leaves no
educator without new class supplies
or Starbucks gift cards (does it count that I
raised a fourth-grade teacher or pay for a
pending coffee every time I'm on queue?);
like how I remain the quiet outcast
not quite sure how to talk to the beauty
queen and, so, considered cold, a pedant
and uncompromising boor, though I'm not;
unlike them, it would seem, in other ways,
too, like their twenty-year marriages to
high school sweethearts I should envy but don't
know how, my own solitude I believe
they covet while coping with the clumsy
fumblings of men whose caresses should be
practiced after so long, or the wish I
once had that you might leave her and I
might find myself more like them after all.