Henry Remembers His Mother

The year that I was six and I woke up
on St. Patrick’s Day and said to you
“Toe of the morning!” because I was
new to reading, had filed away
a greeting card or a decorative sign
or something in my mind as a way
to celebrate this day with you,
you didn’t laugh at me.

The year that I turned eight,
you let me write a message
on each party invitation.

Thank you for both of those things.
You were tops—or, Mother, you were toes.


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