Poem Beginning with a Line by Ada Limon

Begging for love
from the speeding passage of time,
they went shopping
for color-coordinating outfits
arriving at black &maroon only
after tearing off blue &green sweaters
&tossing them willy-nilly on the bed.
For the photo shoot they walked over goat-
head thorns in a tumbleweed field
&fake laughed for the camera,
&posed again by a run-down white wall
for passers-by to witness
their genetically linked bodies
lined up beside each other.
Somebody in a white truck honked
as hands were instructed to touch
uncomfortable places:
elbows, smalls of backs, shoulders.
Then, between the almond trees,
the tallest daughter pulled back
from nearly touching mother’s breasts
on accident, which the photographer
aptly pointed out nourished them all.
It rained the day after that,
and after that, and after that.

for Quickly
*my first two lines from The Leash


9 thoughts on “Poem Beginning with a Line by Ada Limon

  1. You cut to the quick with this deftly woven portrait of the almost desperate need to ‘be a family’ and capture it in a photo (no doubt to be facebooked or turned into a Christmas card). The low is amazing and the two opening lines blend effortlessly into your own work.

  2. Your borrowed lines so beautifully set the tone. I love your photographic details, how they show the need to capture the moment in memory.

  3. Being a photographer, this post touches me. Trying to create a portrait that presents the people as they are rather than as they want to be seen or attempting them to be together when they are not is a challenge.

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