By Susan Hendrix

My happiest moment, you asked. I am sitting here taking inventory:
Childbirths, graduations, weddings. All too fraught with expectations,
Responsibility, bewilderment, to be attended to. By their nature, these
Are harbingers but not the thing. Not the thing to stop and live in.

But I did love, even then, surprising my burdened children off the bus
With a packed picnic in the car, and off we went, and I could watch
Their faces light up the way they should, with glee!

I did love, even then, just being on the porch as the cicadas sang,
Listening to the grown-ups laugh and tell their stories,
Sitting with my brother on the swing, holding fireflies.

I did love, even then, when courting, as I was driving home,
Thinking that anyone who looks can see my shining
And know how loved I am.

But––happiest? Really, thinking of these blessed things,
Lying back in a field of bluebonnets, the Texas sun
Warming my old, old bones, and waiting for you,
I think it is––now.