There are moments that poems are unworthy of.
Like the photographs that can never truly show
the setting sun nor capture the new fallen snow.
Their radiance flattened; their laughter hollowed out.
Our highest metaphors blaspheme both life and love;
all our symbols fail; they can only map the route.

The paths themselves, even the commonest have walked.
For who has not watched the sun descend in purple fire?
Painters, like playwrights, dress the scene in new attire
but the players are made the lesser by their art.
There are no hidden keys; the doors remain unlocked.
Our words but weakly join the song we did not start

and poets only echo what men already know.
They cannot ferry us across those final deeps.
The distilled joy of holding your daughter as she sleeps,
to know that once you too were held–only then
to remember that the one who held you so
is gone–and you will never be so held again.

There are moments that poems are unworthy of.


Other poems at Moss Kingdom about mothers:

Ballad of a Dog LadyExerpt from “The Lanyard” by Billy CollinsHow ill a son returns his mother’s love: a poem on my birthday after realizing she will not call againIf you believe that deaths do come in threesThere are Moments that Poems are Unworthy OfDeeper than her lungs could go: an Elegy for J35 and her podTahlequah by Mark Hernberg