Something I wrote when I was 27 and a single mother of four:


“Dream man”


The night was black, soft and woolen.

I couldn’t leave it – not now.

When I thought of tomorrow, it hurt a little to know

That I would be tired – and perhaps a bit grumpy

I ought to sleep

He is sleeping

With heavy, secure breath – he sleeps

He left me – for the sake of morning:

“Darling – we should sleep now – you know – tomorrow – it’s already 2:30. It was a lovely evening. Sleep tight”

I reach out

Then – let him go

Wanting to keep my part of the evening just a little bit longer – I light a cigarette.


Ten years!


For ten years

He has lain there

Evening after evening

Sleeping – for the sake of tomorrow

No, not always

In times long past, he, as well, has talked nights away

Thinking of it now, I realize how long ago this was

He had become old – long before I – had he become old

Perhaps I’ll never get old

Well wrinkled and gray-haired and cozy I would become

But never really old enough for him

Never so old that I would let go of the “now” – the precious “now” – for something unknown

Maybe it was just as well

I suppose one of us had to…

Maybe he grew old for my sake

He was sound – so I could be free

He thought of tomorrow – so I could have today

Such security he gave

He just was

And we lived


Muffled noise

Noise through closed doors and sleepy ears



Bright light


Waking up

Stretching out an arm

Searching for him

He’s not there?


Open eyes

Wondering eyes

His voice in the kitchen

Shushing lively children


Noisy quiet

Secure noisy quiet


I’m awake

Slowly – The smell of coffee seeps into the room

It reaches my nose

Stays – awaits – what is to come

My tongue slips out, licks the sleep off my lips

The aroma of lovemaking, hidden in the sheets, comes to mix with the aroma of coffee

I sigh with well-being

Brush a hand over my stomach

How flat and unassuming it seems

Remembering when it was tight and fertile

It was beautiful then

His hand softly resting on it, patiently waiting for a kick from our child

I’m one with nothing


The door opens – someone is entering

Quickly – I close my eyes

He thinks I’m sleeping

He feels he is giving – and enjoys his generosity

A hand on my hair


So infinitely soft…



Dumb clumsy words

Words so inadequately saying such a fraction of the feelings

Words – words – Words –

The day has caught me…


I’ve made coffee – are you awake?


Zitta – originally written January, 1969

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