On my porch,
A toddler table waits,
White painted wood,
Two chairs with a heart carved into the back.
My neighbor walked the table down the sidewalk
To my house,
A refurbished discard from her sister
Whose children were too old
To squeeze into the small chairs under the short table,
This place where art and learning
I handed her the check, thanking her,
Excitement in my voice.
Carrying it inside,
The next step in getting ready
For my fifteen-month old grandson’s first visit
To my house.
I pictured my little one
At the table
Coloring, looking at books
Eating a snack.
But the Delta variant.
A visit postponed
To steer clear of
Long layovers in large busy airports.
Cross-country travel is too much of a risk.
The tiny chairs and table in my dining room remain empty.
Sadness enters my space and takes a seat,
Canceling excitement and joy.
I had visions of the little one busy at the table.
Watching him with crayons and markers in hand,
Random scribbles on paper
To make a remembrance of the visit.
Working puzzles his mother and aunt played with
When they were just as small.
Eating oranges and crackers, grinning with each bite,
A snack for energy, fuel for more fun at the table.
My visions stay visions for now.
The family will come sometime
A date not yet known or planned.
Airline tickets valid for a year...are waiting.
Table and chairs...are waiting.
Crayons, markers, paper and puzzles in the cupboard...are waiting.
My arms...are waiting
For a reunion of love with these dear ones far away.