a thank you note for my kids

a thank you note for my kids

Noreen Ocampo

I wonder if my kids are sleeping well now,
especially the ones who spent the school year
napping in the front row. I didn’t get a chance

to say goodbye. I wish I were still jolting awake
to my first alarm & skipping breakfast to dart
after my too-early ride. The empty stomachs

were worth it—the kids would never let me
go hungry, after all, not with all the love they
miraculously had to share at the beginning of

every good morning! I miss the silly laughter,
silly pranks, silly questions—the silly “Miss”
they had to tag to the front of my name. I

didn’t get a chance to thank them. Imagine
being six-going-on-seven & already having
saved a life. Every day, they saved mine

without knowing. I wonder if they are
watching the world from their windows now,
if they are wondering about it all, too. I wish

I could be there to appease all the wonder,
to pay back all the smiles, to stand with
them as we try to make sense of the world.

Noreen Ocampo

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