By David Bottoms
Sometimes when she sleeps, her face against the pillow (or sheet)
almost achieves an otherworldly peace.
Sometimes when the traffic and bother of the day dissolve
and her deeper self eases out, when sunlight edges
through curtains and drapes the bed, I know she’s in another place,
a purer place, which perhaps doesn’t include me,
though certainly includes love, which may include the possibility of me.
Sometimes then her face against the sheet (or pillow)
achieves (almost) an otherworldly calm, (do I dare say that?)
and glows (almost) as it glowed years ago
just after our daughter’s head slipped through the birth canal.
I remember that wet sticky swirl of hair
turning slightly so the slick body might follow more easily,
and how the midwife or nurse or doctor (or someone)
laid an firm open hand under that head
and guided our child into the world.
When that hand laid our daughter on her mother’s breast,
such a sigh followed, a long
exhausted breath, and (stunned) I saw in my wife’s face
an ecstasy I knew I’d never (quite) see again.
I had to go back to the doctor on Wednesday to make sure my blood sugar and liver enzymes were behaving, which apparently they are, which she knew from my blood tests last week. The whole office is always overbooked and running late, but they were running insanely late and after waiting an hour for my 4:30 appointment, I wasn't out of there till after 6. So the part of my day before that, which I think was fine, is a blur -- all I know is that I went to a Kyogre raid, because my baby account has one now.
We spent the evening binge watching the 1981 television version of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, which I enjoyed a lot though I found that there were things I missed from the not-great film (and I don't just mean Alan Rickman and Bill Nighy; Trillian has a more substantial role in the movie and the insane bits with Humma Kavula are unforgettable, plus I kind of like the happy ending). I found some pics I never posted from Artechouse's In Peak Bloom exhibit from before we went to Iceland: