(for my son, Daniel)
The child is sleeping,
folded in among the brown boughs of my arms,
and a promise, formed beyond language, drawn upward
like sap through a pith, stirs through me.
In its slow course, i feel a vow so deep
it does not reach the flower and fade of word
but leaves me steeped, resined, in its truth.
Because i wish this child, awake, a man,
to know that he can keep, lifelong,
the trust, the self-astonishing joy that he has now
and he can draw from them the strength to make
his true path from the place i am
to where he will become, for his own child, a tree,
i vow: these boughs will never break.
From Night Vision. Copyright © 2005 by Kendel Hippolyte. Used with the permission of Peepal Tree Press.
Kendel Hippolyte was born in Castries, St. Lucia, in 1952. He is the author of several books of poetry, including Fault Lines (Peepal Tree Press, 2012).
Date Published: 2018-10-11
Source URL: https://poets.org/poem/mamoyi