To mother

Though I might sit and supplicate beneath the tree in the yard, there is no spirit that comes to shake the leaves and gild them silver, no dress stitched together out of their purple undersides. No voice comes like a flutter of bird wings to soothe like cooled water, sugared or seeping from cane. No warm blue flame gathers at its base, in which to thrust cold chapped hands. All I want is someone to tell me sit down and eat, sit down and drink, lay you down on the sheets, shed your damp, sad clothes. Instead I’ll whittle another twig into a needle. I’ve learned to make such garments: two sleeves, a yoke, a body; a neck hole through which I can push my head as if arriving here again.

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