bone-thin arms resemble bed rails--
tears in my arms, the morphine drip in your vein.
My inner rage refutes your calm acceptance.
You ask if we are waiting for you to die: no.
We are waiting for a miracle,
we are waiting for you to heal--
We are waiting for something that will not happen.
We are stretching for something that is out of reach.
We are holding onto our obsolete hopes, the small fragments of our lives
so closely, we cannot see the bigger picture
In a paradox, God is calling you clearly,
but we can't seem to hear His voice--
only the silence ringing in our ears
as the monitor stops
your breathing ceases
your face un-creases--
and, for the first time in years,
you run Home.
Always start the waterworks.
Even at crowded restaurants.
To know.... it's a piece,
Of my Mommy Jean
Shaking, beaming, crying
As that slim white gold clasp
click... for the first time.
A feather's weight
Instantly at home on my collarbone.
Slit-eyes red and swollen
That pendant-spot between my breasts
Scratched and red
From shaking hands,
Grasping for anything to ground me.
Tremblingly closing that slim white gold clasp
click echoing with tears
Heaving my duffel up my steps
And down the hallway,
To my last door on the right
Dropping it and a gasp
Hands immediately undoing
the circular clasp at my neck
Frantically grabbing the chain on my dresser
Breathing slowing as the heavier chain,
But lighter pendant comes to a rest
click and my breathing becomes regular
Sighing as I flop into bed. Home.
It smells like old people.
We silently take the elevator to the second floor; her room is 205. Mom has the key, so she opens the door. The apartment is so empty. No little old ladies with white hair and a waggling crooked finger.
There's still newspaper on the floor by the door. Mom and I remove our shoes and put them on the newspaper, lest her ghost throw shoes at us. Or, maybe, hit us with a broom. She never did it to me, but Mom says she used to.
The pantry is full of food; mostly Fig Newtons. We always brought her Italian cookies when we came to visit, but she'd make us eat them while we were there. We would insist they were for her, but what good were cookies without someone to share them with? Italian cookies, Fig Newtons, and tea.
The cookie jar on the counter is full of tea bags. You could never have Italian cookies and Fig Newtons without