My Make-Up Girl, As Seen Through the Eyes of Her Mother – A Poem by Dan A. Cardoza

Childe Hassam – Summer Porch at Mr. and Mrs. C.E.S. Wood’s

Submitted by Dan A. Cardoza

That Saturday I tried to read to you,
but you would not have it. You asked to
play at my vanity.

My princess powdered her face
& chose her Phthalo blue eye shadow.

The sunlight on that day, presented us with a dilemma.
In the first version, the sun shone through the open window,
cart wheeling through the Alder trees. You call me mommy.
The breeze laces your hair,
softly around your cheeks. I say you are so pretty
& you simply smile.

In the second version, you put on your make-up
Including, eye shadow. Pausing you gaze up at me.
You catch me smiling, too young to see the tears welling
in my eyes, & you ask if I will comb your hair.

When the same sun falls that evening, I tuck you in, kiss
your forehead & watch you as you slowly drift asleep,
counting glow stars on your ceiling, until your breath swells
deep and strong.

I say goodnight, even though
you cannot hear me.

As I walk under the arch of your doorway,
my feet heavier step by step, I want to hold you in my arms,
until we share another morning as perfect as the last.

About the Poet

Dan has a Master of Science Degree in Counseling. He is the author of two Chapbooks, Nature’s Front Door & Expectation of Stars. Partial credits include Amethyst, UK., Ardent, Better Than Starbucks, California Quarterly, Chaleur Magazine, Curlew, UK., Entropy, Esthetic Apostle, Poetry Northwest, The Quail Bell, Skylight 47, Ireland, Unstamatic, and Vita Brevis.

12 thoughts

    1. Your thoughts are valued. Images are my bread and butter. Sometimes they need a leash or a muzzle. But, this poem meets all the requirements of “subtle enough.” Dan

    1. I am selfish, mine too. I have a daughter and two granddaughters. They are special of course, but they also roll deep and strong. That line was meant to convey this type of strength. Without women, none of us would be here. :)) Thank you much.

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