The Christmas Gift

I am a grown woman
And my mother has given me yet another heart.
On a bracelet this time,
On a necklace before,
Never worn, still in a drawer. 

I ask myself, as each time before;
Does she know me at all?
This woman who birthed me?
I am a serious woman.
See? I wear black.
Patterns and colour need not apply. 

I know this bracelet comes in heartless varieties,
Yet this one is identical 
To the one she gave to my daughter aged 10 
Hers with a bunny charm, 
Mine with a swallow,
And I wonder at the insistence of the ceaseless heart giving 

Then I remember a time,
When my mother last knew me,
When I still drew,
And all that I drew were silphium hearts
All nearly identical, a perfected art
With not an artery or an atrium in sight. 

She still searches for her on occasions
On Christmas, on birthdays
She can hear her calling for her
She needs to give it back
The broken, twisted, discarded part
Taken from the little girl 
I look upon the untainted silver,
Not so much saccharine sweet,
As bittersweet.
The little girl reaches for the bracelet
And finds that it fits
“Thank you mom” she says
And the swallow begins it’s voyage home

A Poem by Grace Curley

Images: unsplash –  Lukas Müller / Stephany Lorena

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Grace Curley
Grace Curley
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