Growing Up – Poetry by Emily K Park

growing up - fireflies
| Opinion > Your Fiction



When I was a child, my mother woke me

The first time she saw fireflies, once

It was warm enough for them to breathe.

I never asked her why she was outside.

When my mother cried, the crickets joined her.

They understood in a way I wouldn’t until

I also stifled my own tears, so that the man

Living next to me would stay sleeping.

But I remember when those new nights

Were filled with flickering candles,

When I, still groggy with summer,

Saw flashes syncopated

With my heartbeat, and knew the world

Became magical while I slept.


I live in a city where lightning hides

Between lamplights, and I wait

Up in the dark, afraid to drift

Asleep, because who will wake me

When something fantastic happens?


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