Poem | When I Am a Middle-Aged Woman

I will wear sweatshirts with bright appliqués
Of owls, and work for Head Start. Saturdays

Will be the food bank; Sundays, church at ten.
Evenings, I’ll appliqué a dog or hen

To the craft fair quilt. I’ll be a thing as solid
In this sea, a thing as pure among the squalid

Lost herds, as God has made. How can He leave me
In this exam, this queue, this street, deceive me

So long about the earthy home that waited,
So neatly gardened, curtained—contemplated

So earnestly, so perfectly recited
In all my interviews? Why am I slighted?

Published in the December 4, 2015 issue: 

Sarah Ruden has published several books, including, most recently, The Face of Water: A Translator on Beauty and Meaning in the Bible and a new translation of Augustine’s Confessions.

Also by this author
Poem | The Divorce

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