Spring 2017, Volume 22

Poetry by Barbara Tramonte

Now We Are Six—Days With Lily Lux

I tell her that Celeste
Puts her kids to bed by 7:00 p.m.
The next day she tells me,
We’re not in Celeste’s family
No! We are our own family
And we do things our way.

The goal of modern American education is
Critical thinking, and
Lily taps
The end post

After school I pick her up
Let’s go to Long Life Veggies
(A new restaurant she’s discovered)

I groan. I
Don’t know where it is
Or how to get there

Give me your phone
Her small hand reaches
From her little back child seat

She navigates and
We arrive
Her body leaps
Through the entry
With a euphoric skip
Her hair flies back

She says to me
What’s that stuff you roll up?
Bob thought it was a napkin?
Mandarin pancakes?
Moo Shu?

I want that
Her dimples flash
Like a coda from inside

Veggie Moo Shu later
She slurps her
Peanut noodles
Angelic head bent over the plate
Like a prayer
Eyes lashed with fur or feathers

I ask
How did you discover
Long Life Veggies?
I saw it from my school bus

Now we are six
Berkeley, California with
Lily Lux,
A fireball of clever thoughts
A girl for the ages to come




BIO: Barbara Tramonte's work has appeared or is forthcoming in Boston Review, The Alembic, The Dos Passos Review, Drunk Monkeys, Ellipsis.,New Letters, The Old Red Kimono, Pearl,  The Pinch, River Sedge,  Slipstream, Spillway, The Tower Journal, Tulane Review, Westview, and other literary and academic journals.