Atticus sent me the link to this poem yesterday. Coincidentally, just yesterday morning, I was gazing at a set of pictures -- three snapshots, lined up, one atop the other -- on the wall in front of my desk. Pictures of my daughters. They are each about three months old. They are wearing the same dusty pink and white outfit, passed down from one sister to another, as if they simply slipped it neatly down the stack of photographs.
These girls and their father are the reasons I do everything I do. I love to look up from my work and see my daughters, and remember when they slept on the couch in the dusty pink of a late afternoon. And I think of the shoulders of the man who carried them across streets and sheltered them from gales when they were tiny and delicate, dreaming dreams they were too young to whisper.
How I love the man who gave me these children, these pictures, these memories. I love the links he sends me, and I love the way we share a wish for a world in which (go read the end of the poem) the rain will stop falling.
by Naomi Shihab Nye
A man crosses the street in rain,
stepping gently, looking two times north and south,
because his son is asleep on his shoulder.
No car must splash him.
No car drive too near to his shadow.
This man carries the world's most sensitive cargo
but he's not marked.
Nowhere does his jacket say FRAGILE,
HANDLE WITH CARE.
His ear fills up with breathing.
He hears the hum of a boy's dream
(Read the rest of the poem here, at The Writer's Almanac.)
The Poetry Friday roundup is at Teaching Authors this week.
And, you can find the upcoming Poetry Friday schedule -- January through June! -- in the sidebar at A Year of Reading.