Instead, it began with a different tree, someone else's, grafted onto ours. And not with spreadsheet cells, rising and falling temperatures of ovulating emptiness. When we wept, the torrents smeared every last one of the Kodachrome intercessions we had. Our calendar of family-building desires, a cathedral full of votives snuffed out by the wind. Don't worry, if you can't have a baby, my grade-school daughter said to a stranger after Quaker meeting. My parents bought us. Oh darling, we longed, pleaded, begged the universe for you and your sister to come. All the entreaties were resolved in a different dialect than expected. With utter steadfastness— the tortoise victorious again. Love wins, they say. And it does. But parenting can also feel like swallowing shimmering glass sometimes, on a dark Monday afternoon. This tree still sways in the fierce wind. Still stands tall and strong, reaches always for more, whispering with the moon and stars.