True that tenderness never stopped 

a bomb, got a man elected 

president, or netted billions 

in market shares. But when

my father stands in the wedge

between car and car door,

clutching the frame and trembling,

and my brother positions the wheelchair

behind him, grasps him under the arms,

guides him into the nylon seat

for the hundredth time as gently

and unhurried as the first,

I want to bow down.

Katherine Lo

is a writer and high school English teacher living in Southern California. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Poet Lore, Rattle, CALYX, and Naugatuck River Review. She is also author of the YA novel The Cellar, one of Kirkus Reviews’ Best Books of 2014.

Contributions by Katherine Lo