In February

Every evening on my way home

from work, I see a girl of nine or ten

in her living room, practicing the piano.

Not at all like I was.

I suppose, mother used to say,

you get the children you deserve.


In May, when the leaves have closed rank,

I'll have to take it on faith that she is still

at the piano

that her mother is busy in the kitchen,

humming along with the music

of the child she deserves.

Gloria Parker is a retired primary school teacher. Her poems have appeared in Prairie Schooner, Margie, Mad Poets Review,Slipstream, Loch Raven Review, Rattle, Nimrod, The Healing Muse, North of Oxford, Edison Literary  Review, Black Coffee Review, Paterson Literary Review and two are forthcoming in North Dakota Quarterly.