Evening Reflections on the Early Mornings - Carlin Corsino

The day was young and she
was all so new. She knew nothing of money
less the copper-bright pennies
sometimes picked from the junk drawer
in the moments when she thought
she could fool us. I would wake
with the dawn birds singing the sad reveille
of working men, sneaking
into the room to carry her downstairs for cold
milk cereal and warm embraces to start
the day. A nightgown dusty with dreams
settled from her sleep’s rest and plastic spoon
tapping time with my work
watch eager to rejoin the machines
of its industry. Each morning she made more
elaborate plans to sell cookies or
lemonade so that I could take some
days off to which I said
there’s a bill to pay, my dear.
And one fine day when the dawn
light shone truest through the finger-
smudged window and reflected from my watch
face, the thing stopped and I resolved to quit
shift work at the far-away factory, but
by then she had stopped squeezing
lemons and I knew I was already
too late.