I rocked today
a restless boy-child not my own,
Yet in nature the same as all
restlentlessly busy one-year-olds
with so much life to live.
We filled the morning chasing, giggling
and reading, "Again! Again!"
Boundaries were tested in triplicate.
We ran down the road discovering birds,
collecting pine cones.
We ate bananas, cookies
fish sticks and french fries.
When rocking time came,
Johnson's baby shampoo under warm sweaty hair
and salty 'Nilla wafers
filled the air with nostalgia.
A moment's struggle with sleepiness
when all at once head settles
in the hollow of a mother's shoulder
muscles sag, lungs sigh
a final string of nonsense chatter
What was only a minute ago
constant motion, incessant questioning
boundless energy, eternal parroting
is now only soft stillness
a bittersweet suspension of passing time.
I rocked a child today, not my own
but memory remains as strong as truth.
I will not retrace the steps
of babies and toddlers again of my own
But the sweet magic of trusting surrender remains.
Magic in the pause of a moment.