Jerome This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

By
I sat hard on the plank of the porch step.
My mom sat a step above, her feet on my step
her legs, on each side of me, shone pale white against the yellow glow
of the window and the night.

I wailed as she yanked through my hair with water and a short-toothed comb.

A bright pink bubble gum ball had been syrupy sweet
until it managed to get lodged and matted in my curls.

My mom cried, too. She had a lot since Jerome died.
None of us knew Jerome like she had, for nine months inside her.

Her fingers continued to pull the strands free, from scalp to tip, scalp to tip,
as if my bawling came from someone else.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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