State of Wonder

They named you Luna
for the hints of moonlight
in your charcoal eyes
and Naia for the joy
which flowed into our hearts
like an untamed river
the day that you were born.

Reclining on a pillow
in the penumbra of
your parents’ bedroom,
your world’s a floating carnival
of colors, shapes and sounds.
Your rapt gaze,
flitting from place to place,
alights on your aging grandpa’s face,
with its alluring combination of
big nose, beard and glasses.

I bury my nose in your belly
and plant a kiss there.
Ma petite poule, I call you
Je t’aime beaucoup, tu sais, Je t’aime
the honeyed sound of my French
makes the thin edge of your lips
curl up like orchid petals
to reveal the small pink tongue within.
Gurgling with pleasure,
you regard me in a state of wonder,
as if I were a master of enchantment,
sprung full-blown from your bed
to shower your days with gladness.

After your mother’s nursed you,
I carefully nestle your head
in the crux of my elbow.
You lie there like
a small rodent in its burrow,
probing the thick flesh of my arm
for the missing nipple.
Bewildered, you press
your tiny fingers in your mouth
and begin to cry.

Luna Naia,
flowing moonlight,
when I hold you in my arms
I’m in a state of wonder too,
discovering new worlds of feeling
in the fragrance of your skin
in your restless, supple limbs,
in your delighted smile
which turns so easily to tears.

(Originally published in Writer’s Haven)

 

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