My daughter fears the night
facing her bed alone, unstoried and abrupt.
She wants to come and join the din.
She does not know my sadness, my
self-pitying whine that I let slip
as prayer each hour over small matters
of money and home. She wants my arm
to encircle her, to shelter her from
her needs. “I want you,” she says, still,
as I hold her. “Here I am,” I say, still,
and she wants a story to fill the
empty spot somewhere that she feels like an
ache in a tooth with her tongue.
My daughter sleeps. I fight the peace offered me
tonight, more at home in my despair than in salvation,
than in a story of passion I find becoming
increasingly my own.