It is a small ceramic cradle six inches long, three across , five tall.
Too small for a live baby. Too big for easy packing
and we were always packing. She came with me
everywhere. White with pink trim. Bundled in dirty shirts,
in yesterdays newspaper, in the bottom of plastic totes
and heavy baskets.
She is always cold to touch, cold as I hold her
to my cheek, nestled to my ear, you can hear her.
Even in the desert, even after the longest drive.
My grandmothers last creation, thrown for my birth.
A useless cradle which followed me like her voice,
a sound I can only imagine. Haunting, my packed life
my childhood travels
from the sun
Landing on an island
I filled her finally
with my sisters baby hair clippings
dried yellow flowers,
beach glass, coins from distant travels
and finally lay her to rest.