I never asked you for an heirloom

or to be your farm fresh egg to bundle in a blanket woven
with tears and the fallow fragrance of New Jersey fields.

August evenings children build homes from folding chairs and crocheted blankets
in the paneled basement of the Takács's house to hide from nenis and bascis

whose ears grow weak as their drinks stay strong. Pista bacsi croons
through boozy breaths:  Szeme fekete / your ebony eyes.

I flutter my brown eyes, attempt my first flight, ask, "Is this right?"
You reprimand me with your blue-eyed weeping blanket that itches with loneliness.

Why could you not have sewn me wings so I could glide to the edge
of salted shores that welcome the splendor of humidity's embrace?

You curse the heat that reeks of red tide and gulf salts.
I savor heat bathed in blue wetness and grass carpet memories.

I free my foot from the tangle of seaweed.


Lisa Cheby