If I’d Said Yes
by Roberta Beary

If I’d said yes to your dad’s request for one child instead of two I wouldn’t have this $2 bill that says in bold crayola blue:

Happy Mother’s Day, Mom!
Good for 1 Breakfast-in-Bed
Never Expires! Love, your son 🙂

It’s in my jewelry box next to the bracelet your sister made me out of red glass beads. The one that has a heart charm that says, I Love You Mom.

One day I’ll ask you to bring me breakfast-in-bed. I won’t wait another 30 years. The glass bracelet with the red beads? I’ll be wearing it.

PHOTO: The author with her two children,in Tokyo, Japan (early 1990s), where she was a “trailing spouse” for five years.

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: : In my first marriage I was the one who would acquiesce. This prose poem grew out of the first time I didn’t acquiesce, which gave me the gift of my son. It is also about family keepsakes and how their meaning changes over time.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Roberta Beary is the haibun editor at Modern Haiku.  Her book The Unworn Necklace, a Poetry Society of America Award Finalist, is in its fourth printing. Her most recent book, Deflection, a collection of prose poems, is an Eric Hoffer book awards finalist. Follow Roberta Beary on twitter @shortpoemz, where she tweets her photoku.