baby teeth

by amy sharp


my son is about to lose his first tooth
by miracle
the tiniest root
like a tether
holds it to his gum
he can actually twist it
make it move all around
his smile is about to morph
into the mouth of a big boy
a spread of teeth
and tongue
and pink gums
that announce to the world
his new place
in the order of things

My son is worried about blood and pain but interested in money and fairies and mythology. Where are all the teeth? Is she real? Is there a tooth mountain?

I’ve held so many small teeth in the palm of my hand.

When I was moving out of my childhood house I found glassine envelopes with all of my baby teeth in them and I looked at them for a long time. I held them to the light. I took them with me when I left.

I expect him to come home from school soon with a tiny tooth in his backpack.
I expect I will have to accept this, but right now there is still a tiny cord holding it all together. There is a place in his mouth where his babyhood is alive for a few more days. I live there. We both do.