Ding

There are these unexpected and cliche’ moments
where you can hear the tingshaw bell
in your chest go “Ding
and you just know, you feel it.

The first time we canned summer vegetables
in Grandma’s kitchen, I could feel them,
all of the women, their hands guiding mine.
The crooked line from sister to Mama and so on,
back to an endless web of woman folk
feeding their kin, and I was one.
Ding.

When the baby touched my chin
with his chubby little hand
for the very first time ever,
looking at me-the-person,
not just his “caregiver”…

well, none of the planning,
reading and preparing served me,
prevented my heart from breaking
in that moment.
Ding.

My stepfather awoke in the I.C.U.
and his first order of business
was to make sure his wife was okay,
that she wasn’t worried,
that he’d been so much trouble to her.
And then did we tip the nurse?
This complex aggravating man,
in his simplest self,
pure love.
Ding.

And making love with you.
Yes, sweet and sexy, but transcendant,
that Soulful soul-filled touchpoint
that lets me know
I am part of the continuum
living finally as I am meant to.
Feeding and being fed,
loving and being loved,
practicing care,
and it is good.
Ding.

Tingshaw

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