Gladnesses and pleasantnesses –
plural happy abstract nouns
dressed up like bursts of sunrise
in their gold-flecked azure gowns --
defend against tense brows and frowns
the way your mommy did when you
could tell she needed you to love
the birthday party she had baked
and made for you when you were seven.
Thank heaven for it all – that call for
sentimental happiness, its sappiness
of gladnesses and pleasantnesses –
bred from yearnings, improprieties
and messes of the darkened heart’s
immersion in the night. Tell that heart
there’s brightness -- there is light.