Moon-crazy I might lose her
I must stem this red tide.
Her unlearned words swell inside me,
well, before a bedroom mirror.
She tugs insistently at my elbow
with all her unspent curiosity,
wants to play with lipstick, earrings –
dress herself in my old things.
I see her in a filmy aura, playing
being ballerina, dusty barefoot in the loft,
a whirl of ostrich feather and tinsel,
to a found Dancette and 45s –
or hoof-clacking kitchen flags
in grownup shoes, hat umbrella’d,
her trailing hem –
trailing off like sleepy words
to fall exhausted on the sofa.
I’d smooth the silk-tails
from her face, count freckles,
brush the downstroke of her lashes with my murmur –
watch her sleep, her sea-deep sleeping.
Oh my daughter unmade daughter –
every moon’s revolve I lose you,
lose you over –
you nameless, lovely unstained thing.