Today I cry at the end of a movie,

first time I’ve cried since the war,

and it comes to me how

our tough little mother

always cried during movies,

how we boys laughed at her

as we pointed and smirked,


“Hey, look!

Mommy’s crying again!”,


and wouldn’t leave her be,

a woman who taught us how

to fight: a knee in the groin,

uppercut to the face,

laughing with us even

as she cried at the end

of the sad scenes


We couldn’t know, could we,

why she was crying, if she cried

because we were still boys,

if she was crying for the characters

in the movies, about herself,

about our lives, about life itself


And yet I cry too at the end of movies

with nothing in them about me,

anything I’ve done, anyone

I’ve loved or lost, expressions

on actor’s faces, in their eyes,

the anguish of their voices,

violins revealing their pain,

trumpets of glory sounding

victory over cruel injustice


Just crying, that’s all,

with nothing to explain