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By Jennifer Halversen

Should we move the area rugs, put in shower rails, get the panic button necklace

as seen on TV? Should we build a ramp? Do we hire some smoky-smelling guy

from the yellow pages? How many knitted hats should I make? Do you like soft

yarn or the sturdy kind? If I favor rainbow colors, will you feel like a hippie? What

will I look like by the time you are bald? Should I read to you? Shakespeare or

Grisham? Dickens or Clavell? What if we run out of Coke on Sunday? How sick

before I break the Sabbath for you? Remember the sugar cube castles and pretzel

stick tepees we made for junior high history? Our piñata that wouldn’t break? And

what if you die looking out at the oak tree while I’m buying sweatpants? What if

latex is all you remember? What if Aunt Marge wants to sing at the funeral? What

if we can’t find the picture of you in your flight suit? What if all my black nylons

have runs? When I visit on weekends, may I spread a blanket on the grass above

you? What if I only bring grocery store mums with crinkly purple plastic? Will

you still come with me to ball games and air shows? Should I shush the kids or let

them play among the headstones?


Jennifer Halversen is a mother of five who returned to school at the age of 38 to complete her English degree. She graduated in 2014 and uses poetry as a way to record her life journey, exploring the wonder of the everyday.