241: Lisle, Illinois, November 1972

241: Lisle, Illinois, November 1972

241: Lisle, Illinois, November 1972

Lisle, Illinois, November 1972
by Robin Silbergleid

My father eats cold chop suey,
props the carton on the slow curve
of his stomach. It matches my mother’s.
She, folding clothes in the nursery, thinks
another six weeks to paint,
to pick out names—she calls me Robin,
harbinger of spring. Just past Thanksgiving,
she knows what she has to be thankful for,
the neighbor upstairs, the baby on the way.
1,000 miles from home, she feels like
a pioneer woman on an abandoned homestead.
She tells herself she’s being ridiculous, my father
watching TV in the next room. He has
a law degree, works for the government. Each day
she drives him to work so she can use
their one brown car, buy groceries, pink dresses.
Each day she walks the dog
around the parking lot, gets the mail.
Sometimes there’s a letter from New Jersey,
California. Sometimes there’s a magazine—
Women’s Day or Ladies’ Home Journal.
This is our home now, she tells the dog,
the child, as her waters break on the sidewalk.

"Lisle, Illinois, November 1972" by Robin Silbergleid, from EXCERPTS FROM A SECRET PROPHECY, by Robin Silbergleid, copyright © 2015 CavanKerry Press. Used by permission of CavanKerry Press.

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