cabbage patch
Her Favorite Doll
by Nurit Israeli

I sort through a lifetime
of belongings – getting ready
to let go of the house,
when in a trunk filled with old toys,
I spot the Cabbage Patch doll.

The Cabbage Patch doll
that was my daughter’s favorite,
that was greeted with glee long ago,
that was once doted upon,
still looks the same.

She hasn’t been out
in years, but still wears
the peach-colored dress
she wore on their outings.
It matches her red braided hair.

She is still soft,
and her chubby-cheeked face
remains rosy, but her blue-painted
eyes seem tinged with sadness.
Does she somehow know?

My grandsons will take
the Lego bricks and the trucks.
They will overlook
the once-special doll
their mother loved best.

I know and, in a room where
echoes of children’s voices
ricochet off photo-covered walls,
I hold for one last time
a doll that bears witness.

I let the memories linger,
as I let go of the doll
that was my daughter’s favorite.
She still looks the same.
It’s only we who have changed.

IMAGE: The Cabbage Patch doll

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: I am preparing to move out of a home where I have lived with my family for over 40 years — the home where my children grew up and where their children love to be. As I sort through a lifetime of belongings, I discover items I haven’t seen in years, items that bear witness to my story.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Nurit Israeli, a psychologist who writes poems, holds a doctorate in psychology from Columbia University. Nurit has published poems in international poetry anthologies, the New York Times, Writer’s Digest, and other online and print magazines. Several of her poems won awards in writing challenge competitions.