by Cheryl Merrick
My table stands trim in its neat tablecloth.
Its usual covering of books and half eaten food
now only stale memories.
My floor extends out in an unbroken expanse.
The toys which once dotted it
long since broken, or stored in the attic.
Walls, cupboards and sinks gleam in pristine whiteness,
no longer muddied by small industrious hands.
Coats hang conscientiously on their hooks,
instead of massing in huddles on the floor.
Shoes remain steadfastly with their mate,
having given up their earlier mischievous ways
of hiding behind sofas and beds.
At last, my home has become a place
of peace and order.
A place to be envied and aspired to
by the harried young mother.
I smile serenely, knowing that in time, she too,
will achieve this state of grace
when her children, like mine, are grown.