Glyn Maxwell (from his book Nerve)

I made my child a promise, so a weight
was passed to her. I saw how carefully

its power was handled, that it lit the thoughts
around it, and I felt it warm her talk

and urge the hours along. Since I, like you,
no longer know a word like that, the light

she gained was lost to me. It didn’t mean
I’d let her down—I didn’t—but I seemed

to be aligned with those who might in time,
as if I’d somehow set coordinates.

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