FOR PETRA’S DADDY by Amy Hilgendorf

He wears what he wore this morning,
Same as last night,
A uniform of work, of service,
Of getting through the day.

His eyes elaborate.
Telling of a day of weary,
Of searching all day
For solutions that elude.

She cries.
But not to complain;
But because it’s the only way
She can say something’s not right.

She cries because she knows
That he always tries.
He can’t understand what she means,
But he tries all the solutions
Until he finds the one.

So she’ll cry again,
Because she knows he always tries,
And he’ll always find what she needs.

THE LONGEST WINTER by Amy Hilgendorf

The shock of green startles me awake
To realize
The longest winter is over.

These streets were paved with ice.
Seemingly unnavigable,
Promising hurt if you dared.

But now my eyes pop
From what meets me here.
Through frozen cracks,
Warmth, energy, color, life,
Everywhere I look.

From dark and dry branches
Stretch little green fingers
Reaching to touch the sky.
Cold, damp winds
Softened to sweet, soft whispers.

I watch each day.
The growth, the beauty, the nature love.

A blossom flows gently from a tree,
Like a gemstone had sprouted wings,
On an adventure to a world brand new.


When she was six days old, she smiled at me.
I was singing at the time.
They said it wasn’t a social smile,
just an accidental movement of mouth muscles.

As the weeks went by, she had more accidents.
They can’t pinpoint the day she figured it out,
but now they say that Petra’s smiling social smiles.

Now she knows exactly what she’s doing,
and she does it well.
Petra blesses freely with her smiles.
She blesses Daddy’s funny faces,
she blesses Mommy’s conversations.

She bestows a variety of smiles on relatives and strangers.
Sometimes she adds well-chosen accidental words.