I find myself most alone
When I believe I am striving for glory.
These times, cool and sharp,
A monument of moon-white stone
lodges in place near my heart.
In a dream, my children
Glisten inside raindrops, or teardrops.
Like strangers, like seeds of children.
I will only be allowed to claim them
if I consent to love everyone’s children.
If I consent to love everyone’s children,
Only then will I be allowed to claim them,
My strangers, my seeds of children,
Glistening inside raindrops or teardrops
In my dream. Children
Lodged in place near my heart—
A monument of moon-white stone,
Cool and sharp.
I believe I am striving for glory
When I find myself most alone.
Copyright © 2024 by Tracy K. Smith. Originally published in Poem-a-Day on February 20, 2024, by the Academy of American Poets.