A Practical Mom
By Amy Uyematsu
can go to Bible study every Sunday
and swear she’s still not convinced,
but she likes to be around people who are.
We have the same conversation
every few years—I’ll ask her if she stops
to admire the perfect leaves
of the Japanese maple
she waters in her backyard,
or tell her how I can gaze for hours
at a desert sky and know this
as divine. Nature, she says,
doesn’t hold her interest. Not nearly
as much as the greens, pinks, and grays
of a Diebenkorn abstract, or the antique
Tiffany lamp she finds in San Francisco.
She spends hours with her vegetables,
tasting the tomatoes she’s picked that morning
or checking to see which radishes are big enough to pull.
Lately everything she touches bears fruit,
from new-green string beans to winning
golf strokes, glamorous hats she designs and sews,
soaring stocks with their multiplying shares.
These are the things she can count in her hands,
the tangibles to feed and pass on to daughters
and grandchildren who can’t keep up with all
the risky numbers she depends on, the blood-sugar counts
and daily insulin injections, the monthly tests
of precancerous cells in her liver and lungs.
She’s a mathematical wonder with so many calculations
kept alive in her head, adding and subtracting
when everyone else is asleep.
Adam's girlfriend Katherine stayed at our house last night when we got back from New York, so I got most of my work done in the morning, then took them out for lunch at Bagel City, where we got extra bagels to bring home and shared desserts. Katherine is a Pokemon Go player -- we did a raid at the gym at the Wall Street Bull statue in New York's financial district -- so I took her to the JCC to do a Groudon raid there with a lot of my usual group, after which we went to World Market looking for holiday marzipan and settling for cheese and holiday tea on sale.
Late in the afternoon, Adam drove Katherine to College Park to water her plants there, then took her home for the rest of winter break to Fredericksburg, where they had dinner out for Restaurant Week. Paul and I did not have anything so exciting for dinner but we watched The Flash (yay, Killer Frost) and The Gifted (yay, Kate) before catching up on this week's Victoria (yay, Jenna Coleman, though there is a lot of fudged history on this show). Here is some magnificence from the New York Historical Society's Gallery of Tiffany Lamps: