Nieces and Nephews

I think of their little hands

reaching and curling

five fingers around three of mine

just to tug me toward

the magic of their hour.

I think of how I can

see their minds spin

when garbled words

can’t quite keep up

with the learning they’re in.

I think of the distance

between them and me

how I can only be an auntie

for a fraction of moments.

I hope those fractions

add up to a prism

a lingering rainbow of light

when I leave.

For when the world falls apart

and the wreckage is too painful

I bring to mind their funny faces

all that they are able to be

and see on this planet

we call home.

I hold out hope they may be

free from suffering

and I drown in the knowing

life won’t really work like that.

So I let them turn me

round and round

and giggle as I fall

and pray for

just that moment’s sake

we can all linger

in the safe warm glow

of each other.

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