To This New Child Breathing in the World

We have all heard, perhaps said, “It’s so hard to believe it’s the right thing to do, to bring a child into this world.”  And during this time, it’s likely said with all the more concern. It’s a loving concern, for the child. We all want our children to have a world that they deserve, not one they have to adjust to.

To This New Child Breathing in the World

When you look back
at your mother, her
father will come back

to play. The world’s
slow promise waits
for your walk, the next

chance to wander along
each day’s concert
of impossible notes. Your

mother, audacious with
love, is in your blood. She
will sleep in your bones. She

will look up into the sky’s long
reach and ask that you stay longer
than the day her father had, safer

than her mother lives. And you
will carry their fierce and loyal
quiet. Yes, you will bring him

back, and with them walk within
the light between the trees. You
will step to the edge of the garden

where they will see again
what Cezanne saw—no line
to separate, only the blend

of form, the definition of color,
the wild uncertain weight
of their hearts’ unruly kindness.

–Jack Ridl

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Visit Roan & Black to find Jack’s books in West Michigan.

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And, of course, click here to visit ridl.com, check out what Jack’s been up to, maybe say hi!

12 thoughts on “To This New Child Breathing in the World

    • Sigh. You know this poem. And that’s at the heart of so much of your
      work–that open and breaking–and mending and holding.
      XXX

    • I hope and hope and hope you know what your presence at the reading meant to
      me, Linda, AND what you said afterwards.
      And your seeing that the poem is about something “beyond”–well, of course you saw that!
      XXX

    • Your saying this about Meridith and me went right into my heart.
      To know you know this about the courage says soooooo much about your
      great empathetic soul, Meg!
      XXX

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