( I found this prose poem written back in 2018 when our
darling Emma Aroha was born and we were in Seoul soaking up the joy)
It’s the coffee cup beside the phone charger on the floor.
the mobile playing nursery rhymes bolted from above
her hair splayed across the TV remote as she sleeps
a folded clean nappy, discarded singlet, a portable fan
paper covering the fluorescent lighting but not entirely
the white noise and green lights of the air conditioning
water bottles, protein shake, milk powder on the microwave
French, German, all of them eventually abandoned for
breast milk… the sucking reflex as she sleeps beside you
you are together on the foam mattress on the floor
it’s four types of baby carriers and the fact you love
the traditional wrap – just a piece of fabric tied tightly
heartbeat on heartbeat or head against her back
the composting machine with its hungry worms will
eventually eat all your uneaten rice, seaweed, banana
on the fridge is a photo of your Appa on his grandfather’s
knee, looking down on you confirming those cross cultural
genes and a box of grapes like pearls in tissue from your
Korean Halmoni who comes to make seaweed soup for her girl
your Appa’s ripped jeans hang from the door, belt still attached
the white rabbits dangle, and turn. I am sitting in the feeding chair
we purchased for your Omma. I can stretch my legs out full.
I’m on guard, awaiting your awakening, ready to take you from her sleeping arms.
I am your Kiwi Halmoni.
7 thoughts on “You ask what love is”
Just lovely 🙂 We have a nephew who is fortunate to have two cultures Vietnamese and New Zealander to draw the good points from east to west.
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Yes, it feels like such a privilege to have this cross cultural experience. Thank you, Suzanne for stopping to comment. The simple cloth wrap (front or back) is by far the best baby carrier in spite of all the modern and fancy versions of it.
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Very true, though I never had children I have seen plenty of women wear them. Perhaps a good back helps with that way of carrying a child? I think it is a privilege and it is the future a melting pot of various cultures. More interesting.
This is so lovely Maggie. I’m there…!
Thanks, Linda. xx
Your lovely poem takes me right back to the thick, sweet, still atmosphere of a house with a newborn baby in it. So good
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Thank you Rachel xx