Mom and Me, 1996ish
When she was thinking, seeking clarity
She softly squinted her brown eyes
like she was far away from the moment
Taking her right hand, lifting it to her nose
placing the top side of her pointy finger
beneath her nose in repose.
With her middle finger in an
exaggerated caress, steadily,
at times vigorously, or very slowly,
she would pet the bridge of her nose
down and past the soft bulb of it
in an easy steady slide, meeting
with a flick of her finger at the end then
tapping the back of her index finger.
Repeating this motion many times
in a variety of rhythmic beats even
when clarity seemed to have found her.
It was a charming and odd way to ponder
to this child’s mind even into adulthood,
seeking the deeper meaning of the ways of life,
if that was indeed what she was doing.
It was necessary to copy it, to see
what it felt like to be like her, to do it.
Was there magic in it, and did clarity
actually knock on her mind and give it?
I found it comforting to do it, relaxing.
Practicing the various ways of the
caress, the pet, the quick and slow
slides down my nose with that
generous flick at the end.
Decades passed and it became an artifact
of my mother that I thought I had forgotten.
Put it away in my heart with her death and
the many other quirks and foible treasures
to be pulled up and out in remembrance.
And this one idiosyncrasy brought to
my attention by a loved one.
“You’re just like you mother.
That nose thing she did.
How she pets it when she was sitting
quietly thinking, you do that too”.
jeanne adwani@copyright april 2021