Heart Happy (cathy_edgett) wrote,
Heart Happy

Morning poem -

Julia Bates

I keep looking at photos,
in a book on
photos of Julia Bates,
from when she was young, and newly married,
and then, after seventeen children.
Her mouth was firm even when young,
but in the later picture,
she looks angry,
and her mouth
is almost a caricature,
in its upside down curve.
She is heavy and well-set,
like a bulb in a pot.
She and her husband, Edward,
were happy and intimate
through "four decades of married life,"
so the photo is curious to me.
She is clearly posed. 
Did she not see how firmly she sat?
Of course, seventeen children.
Eight survived to adulthood. 
It is hard to imagine, and yet,
it seems their family life
was something to inspire,
and, yet, this photo.   
She looks mean,
and not like someone
bringing forth so much life,
but, then, so much life was lost
in those days -
so much death -
we have no idea
and so her face
is a face that survives -
no face lift,
just the willingness
to handle pain
and continue to live -


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