Mother, Though This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

February 15, 2018
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Everyone else is fading to ghost.
No more than a childhood smile
or laugh.


My mother, though, is still here—
Nostalgia does not have to bother with her,
although I suppose it is not appropriate for a grown girl to sit on mommy’s lap at dinnertime—
I do it anyways.


My mother
is a paint-by-numbers of an orchard on the verge of springtime.


I asked her what I was supposed to be doing here.
Baby, she told me, you shouldn’t hold the weight
of a thousand worlds like that. Your back
will start to ache and your knees will begin to creak.
Yes, I replied, but you didn’t answer my question.
Mother smiled then, took off her glasses.
Come on, she said, I’ll wash your hair in the bathroom sink.
And when she stopped shampooing and went to rinse,
I said, wait, please, just one more minute.

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