When I Will Tell ChildrenWhen I am a mother my hair will be wavesWhen I Will Tell Children10 years ago in Free Verse More Like This
like the hair of my mother before me.
My children will long to lay mortar.
In the heart of this city I'll show them
a towering slender steel building which tapers, is topped by
a drunkard's idea of spacecraft. I'll tell them,
"America pierces the sky with a saucer
for nothing except for so people can reach it,
so people can pay for the fact they have reached it.
America's captured a sky, and the sky was not always
as blue as the eyes of my parents before me."
In the heart of my home in the dark
I will say to my children
as we are all crouched in the corner,
"Be silent, American hivelings. Be still
lest the naked bear get thee."
When I am an elder my hair will be sparse
like the hair of the old folks before me.
I'll say to the children, who swarm my stiff knees
and who long to spread outwards,
"God does not pick sides, but we chose him.
We are his choosing people. We've claimed him.
America's planted a flag on the moon