Mother, after thirty years of mothering,
after thirty years of washing our underwear
five times a week (at least), you’ve suddenly
found yourself in a new predicament:
you’re underwear-less. That is, you’ve got your pair,
but ours, all four of ours, reside now elsewhere,
in other drawers. My streaky whites still roam,
nomads looking for a home, the ugly ducks
of the underwear clan— even they have gone
and left the nest. At last. The youngest bum
is married off, and your washer sits idle,
no longer needed. And you? What about you?
You’ve just begun. Our clothes were morning clouds
and they’re pulling away. Now comes the sun.