Before My Time
           From a photo of my mother, circa 1930's
        by Priscilla Turner Spada

The photo holds me, like the woman
in the image holds a lamb--
warmly, tenderly, and pleased
to have this experience.

She wears a sweater and a snood,
I'm sure, hand-knit by her, because
she had those skills within her hands--
a facile twist or turn would make

a doily or a children's coat.
But those were fashioned later on.
The occasion of this scene
was some years before I came.

Her smile seems easy here, but soon
the war, the bombs, the broken dreams--
a single mom with two young girls;
then a down-cast look was her default.

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