Bears | R a s m a H a i d r i | Rasma Haidri


Remember, we’re all bears! my daughter 

says, and we are: she baby-bear or sister-bear, 

(this can change without warning) but Goldilocks 

is always the same, off in another room, ruining things. 

Mommy-Bear? Now Goldilocks broke my other chair!

I fix it every time - tap! tap! my carpentry skills

are amazing, and I’m a whiz in the kitchen: each meal 

just too hot, so we take a walk, and return

to find Baby-Bear’s is just right. 

If we get there before Goldilocks. Lately 

when she’s been around she sleeps a lot, 

but we’re used to it. She’s in my bed again! 

Mommy-Bear? Can we keep her? We’ll roar at her 

really gently and she won’t be scared. 

On the freeway my daughter asks if all 

the people in all these cars are bears. 

I pause - then say, No, I think it’s just us. 

Silly! Of course they are! 

This is bear world you know!

So as we step out of the car she says, 

We’re bears! Be sure to step on all the cracks!

and I do, believing it’s our calling, 

my big bear feet and her little paws

stomping precisely on every line.  

First appeared in Mothering, winter 1992