In a tsunami of reports about health, that arrive in an age of anxiety,
in a rising ocean of uncertainty
that’s inundating our islands of calm, while families driven from Idlib watch their babies freezing to death for want of shelter,
as oil becomes cheap,
as savings are savaged,
as panic feeds on panic,
as the old lack all words to comfort,
as the young tremble for the future,
as the future overtakes the moment –
some thing good,
some moment of balm, some relief, an inlet, a lagoon of quiet joy:
this baby this entire new person this changer of lives
three kilograms and a handful of grams – of life
make her great-grandmother squeal
and squeal again, and again
Nana, surely you know by now, babies are born!
Nana, you had two of your own,
They each had three of their own, The day came when those six
Brought forth babies of their own.
Nana, why do you squeal,
what’s to astonish an old lady of ninety-three?
A baby, that’s to astonish
That’s to amaze, to heal, to comfort, to inspire,to thank God –
and to love.