I do whatever I want these days,
still a little skittish that you will appear
to demand that I do what you want.
But the weeks go by without your call
And without the guilt that once prodded me to keep in touch.
So I weep when news we would have shared
must remain my own,
and if I am afraid that it is a sin
not to be responsible to another -
neither child nor mother to rein me in -
I cannot deny that having my life
wholly to myself
makes me happy.
The hours I use to set aside "for me,"
time without structure, but often spent distracting my anxiety
with TV movies, crossword puzzles, solitaire,
were really reserved for you:
the child I was hanging on tenterhooks,
like a new recruit awaiting orders from her sergeant.
Now the balloon that would lift me
to the sky is expanding.
Still tethered to the ground you walked,
I glimpse a whoosh of wings above the rooftops.
This poem appeared in the Summer 1998 IPA Newsletter.