Dear baby on the bus,
your smile is as contagious as your yawn,
the way your little mouth stretches
as wide as it can go and
your binky falls out,
dimples bursting like happy fireworks
across your tiny face.
Your mother's nose is as wide and beautiful
as a mango tree; her eyelids
are round heavy stones worn smooth
by the same worry that carves mistrust into
the center of her brow.
Did you see my soft look towards the two of you?
I think she did—and frowned, unsure
how to hold a stranger's pity.
It wasn't pity.
I'm falling in love with your empty palms,
where greed and jealousy cannot yet fit,
and sorrow finds no space to perch.
Soon you'll be picking up the pieces
of a broken city, soon you'll know the weights
that cut your mother's hands—
but for now, you'll hold her scarred fingers
as if you could heal them,
as if you might break the mask she wears,
as if in one person's world, she's all that matters.
I hope she knows.