When you cry out in the night
“Ma ma ma ma ma”
in your little voice like a creaking door,
And for a moment,
you are all the babies that we ever were
Crying out in your terror and your hunger and your loneliness.
Your comfort draws near,
coming at a run from the bedroom
the heart of the called-for bursting
with its love for you
But what of the others?
Who wept, and were not answered
Who cried out, until they were not.
It’s then that I begin to understand
Just what has been lost.