what makes a daughter?

yeloow brick


is it the way she looks at you?

is it how she smiles?

is it her blond hair?

her blue eyes?

or maybe the ferocity of her anger

when you tell her      something      of little consequence.


but no

it is shared air

the beats you hear

the drafty windows

the up and down of your stairs

the tv remote and its smudges

the creaky hardwoods

the feel of humid days

the bark of your dog

the clock tick tock

the doorbell

a breeze


a daughter is defined by gender

only really

not by blood or DNA even

a daughter is a daughter

to a father too

with or without

wrong or right

black or white

out or in

good or bad


my daughter

has a green room

and a big sister

a dog

and a cat

millions of little things memories

places people things

shared in the process of a lifetime

if not

a placenta


my daughter’s things are not what

they would have been

in another city in another belly not my own


but my daughter

has roots fed by years of water and sunlight

not possible

in that city on that block in that building


tornadoes don’t come here little one

i will make damn sure of that


little dorothy

consider me your glinda

this, your yellow brick

that, your journey


just beginning



photo from thetwocities.com