Picking Apples

I have grass in my shoes, rain in my hair.
My pant legs are soaked and my eyes are hazy tired.
You are asleep in the rearview mirror,
a bundle of limbs and doughnut crumbs.
Weaving in and out of the apple trees, I lost you.
A branch found your cheek and marked it,
two red lines criss-crossed by hot tears.
I followed your wailing until I found you,
cared for (but not comforted, no) by some random mother.
When we get home, you’ll wake just long enough
to remind me to tell Daddy about the fresh cider doughnuts
(and to confirm that there will still be one left for you).
We’ll make apply crisp out of this rainy orchard day,
and fill the house with the smell.
I wouldn’t have gone without you,
I wouldn’t even have realized the loss.
The wipers clear the mist – for a moment only.
The road is humming us home.


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