In the empty lot next to my aunt's house
In the year I am skipping kindergarten
On a May day when the light has turned
the snow into a coverlet of flowers
I stand bare-legged in a field,
A girl who does not know apples grow on trees.
Who does not remember her home town
Or know where she will be schooled.
The filigreed weeds stroke my legs
Like the tickling I've felt only from one aunt.
I have been set free for the moment
To wander under my portion of sky,
To turn my Slavic face up to the sun.
In closed houses things are stirring.
In my mother's heart trouble is brewing
As she feeds the factory machine like a vendetta.
My youngest sister, still an egg,
Is safe for now. But it will change. I can hear
In the wind the geese from over the ocean,
Grandmothers plucking white feathers.