Umbrella

Connie Wanek

When I push your button

you fly off the handle,

old skin and bones,

black bat wing.
.
We’re alike, you and I.

Both of us

resemble my mother,

so fierce in her advocacy
.
on behalf of

the most vulnerable child

who’ll catch his death

in this tempest.
.
Such a headwind!

Sometimes it requires

all my strength

just to end a line.
.
But when the wind is at

my back, we’re likely

to get carried away, and say

something we can never retract,
.
something saturated from the ribs

down, an old stony

word like ruin. You’re what roof

I have, frail thing,
.
you’re my argument

against the whole sky.

You’re the fundamental difference

between wet and dry.
.
From Rival Gardens: New and Selected Poems by Connie Wanek
Umbrella

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