Next Time

Sometimes I tell my father about a city
he should visit, and — its being far,
his being almost ninety — he says, “Okay,
next time.” Meaning, in his next life,
a new set of chances for catching up,
finishing off, and making right.

My mother reads only religious books, but does
not aim for eternity in this life. “I have to
be born so many times,” she says. “No need
for me to meditate just now.”

My impulse is to find their faults —

my heart is like the bitter gourd
in my parents’ garden — though there is nothing
I wouldn’t do for them. Each day I try
to live a deliberate life, knowing my chances are many
but numbered, knowing that someday someone will judge me,

and hoping it will not be too harshly.

 

Note:  This poem can be found in Observing the Moon – A Collection of Poems by Sneha Madhavan-Reese, published by Hagios Press.

 

 

About the Poet:
Sneha Madhavan-Reese lives with her family in Ottawa, Ontario. Her poems have appeared in numerous literary journals and anthologies, including Global Poetry Anthology 2015 and The Best Canadian Poetry in English 2016. Observing the Moon is her first book. www.madhavan-reese.com/sneha

 

 

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