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Marcia J. Pradzinski


I look for it in the honeyed plumpness
of the golden comforter,
the cold morning bathroom tiles,
the rain of water warm then cool
      that bathes my senses awake.

I look for it
in the fire and fragrance
of my son’s hair
as we begin our morning struggle,
in the earthy tang of coffee
and the soft cork of the bulletin board
      littered with reminders.

I look for it
in the burgundy sofa
that sighs with my weight as I listen
for the rumble of the yellow school bus,
and later
in the newspaper-reading faces on the train,
the conductor’s song of stops,
the garlic-scented accents of students
their struggle twisting their way into English
      as I twist my way in and out of the day.

And when it comes, it comes
not in days away, not in evenings out.
But as the day ebbs
with dishes stacked in the sink,
clothes to be washed, lists to be made
it calls me softly into my son’s room
invites me to sit at the edge of his bed
and stroke his soft curls.
The rhythms
of his breath the ticking clock
my breath weld the scene
and hold us
    in an eggshell of space.

This poem first appeared on
It also won 3rd Place in the 2010 Poetry Challenge.
Used here with the author’s permisison.

Marcia Pradzinski is a Chicago native currently living in Skokie, Illinois. She teaches ESL to International Teaching Assistants at the University of Illinois in Chicago. Marcia has always loved words in their many contexts: on a page, in songs, and in foreign languages such as Polish and Ukrainian, which she heard spoken while growing up.  Her poetry has been featured in both print and online publications and, in 2010 and 2011, Marcia's poems received first place and honorable mention awars in the Evanston Public Library's Jo-Anne Hirshfield Memorial Poetry Contest.


Post New Comment:
Carole K:
Lovely. Marcia, you have named the moments of grace in this difficult world with poetic depth and artistry. Carole K.
Posted 11/15/2011 09:54 PM
Gail Goepfert:
It's a winner, Marcia, in so many ways. The search for comfort--so familiar.
Posted 11/15/2011 06:30 PM
Joe Sottile:
Yes, this is stunning and beautiful. We are strong and fragile human beings.
Posted 11/15/2011 11:45 AM
I couldn't agree more with Kevin. I read this poem and just sat here stunned. It's beautiful, Marcia. You have captured it all so well and the ending, "in an eggshell of space" --I don't have words.
Posted 11/15/2011 11:05 AM
Linda Lee (Konichek):
I love images that are new and perfect, like "eggshell of space." I agree, YDP is one of the best ways to start the day, especially with a poem like this one! Thank you.
Posted 11/15/2011 10:34 AM
Love that ending--"eggshell of space"--captures how fragile moments and life are
Posted 11/15/2011 10:21 AM
Posted 11/15/2011 10:12 AM
soothing and comforting, a poem to remind us not to let the ordinary moments slip away...thank you
Posted 11/15/2011 09:47 AM
I'm glad YDP has become part of my morning routine, part of that time where, as Marcia says, we all 'twist our way in and out of the day.' A fine poem.
Posted 11/15/2011 09:40 AM
Terrific! Such a universal experience in mage-laden verse! Thank you.
Posted 11/15/2011 08:58 AM
Marcia's words return me to the fullness available within the ordinary. This is truly a gift.
Posted 11/15/2011 06:47 AM
This is beautiful!
Posted 11/15/2011 05:32 AM

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