You picture your mother as a tree
– somehow that makes it easier.
A silver birch, undressing
unhurriedly, as though days were years,
while a fine rain plays
like jazz in her hair. She drops
her fine, white leaves
one by one. Her branches
are almost bare now. See,
how beautiful she is against the darkening sky.
by Shazea Quraishi
from I Am Twenty People
publisher: Enitharmon, London, 2007