I Have Done Small Things
today: have threaded the needle’s eye with the current favorite seafoam spool, have closed up
the tear where the down spilled out of my daughter’s winter coat, have dragged
the heavy bags back to the feeders lofting them on my shoulder and waited
for the pouring sound to climb its rasping octave and the seed to reach the brim, have taken
a moment midday to remind myself of my mother’s legs pedaling her bike to the post office on the
backroads, have poured
water on the roots of the olive tree and the Meyer lemon tree who can’t articulate their needs, have
beautiful boy to my old and sleeping dog, his damp nose in a slice of sunlight, have swept
sweaty curls off temples no bigger than a rose petal with a particular kindness, have watched
the designated ant bring the body of the dead in its arms all the way along the baseboard, have given
the onions their time to weep in the butter the rice its space to toast, have folded
the last of the day into neat and quiet piles of dishtowels, of matched and nestled socks.
Elizabeth O’Rourke’s poetry has been featured by Krista Tippett’s “On Being” blog and in the anthology “Writing Fire.” She studied at Boston College and received an MFA from Sarah Lawrence College. She is the poetry teacher at Mamaroneck Public Library. Born outside of Boston to an Irish Catholic family, much of her writing focuses on the sacredness and mysticism of her daily encounters with the world and what it asks of her. Elizabeth reads and writes at home in Mamaroneck, NY and Great Barrington, MA while caring for her young daughters Hope and Sinéad.