From a Crawlspace


From a Crawlspace

Dear Mom (she wrote),
I worry when I don’t see you,
and when I see you,
I worry you do not
see me.

Our tragedy.

Trying to please the other,
as if the other
were the mother–

And you, winded and wound
are now pleased
by nearly all–

while I’m still wound
up, beached
in some gone breach–
the caked dust at the roots
of your window, the viscous air
we swam through
room to room, the much-vacuumed
carpet, its green closer
to a uniform at war
than a blade
of grass–

Why can I not get past
the so long past?
grasp what is nearly over–
understand it’s time, in time.

dear mom (she wrote), dear mother–


A draft poem of sorts for Izy’s Out of Standard on “Pigeon Superstition” on With Real Toads.  Note that all poems are not autobiographical! This is an odd one for the prompt.

The pic is mine, done on a paper tablecloth at a restaurant (bar!)


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9 Comments on “From a Crawlspace”

  1. Jim Says:

    It can be time but not everyone wants to use it. I didn’t, the time passed, and I missed it. That has never bothered me.
    What bothered me was that he never brought the recurring injustice up, just acted as if nothing out of the ordinary ever happened.
    A nice piece of writing, it needed to be said. For some.

  2. Kerry O'Connor Says:

    When it comes to stimulus and response, I doubt anything can set of triggers quite like close family relationships. This poem is written with the sensitivity of understanding what it takes to accept a parent has grown old.

  3. The way we just a assume that we understand each other, trying to please and never truly know if what we do is the right way. This is truly the pigeon’s way of behaving… Wonderful and truly deep in understanding.

  4. X Says:

    We all want some validation from our parents, and there is always tension, even if it never surfaces as we are growing up – finding our identity separate from them – but at the same time needing them – to validate that.

  5. hedgewitch Says:

    The mother-child dilemma never more sympathetically stated, I think–do we ever find an answer to it? It seems like a lifework, only to end up vacuuming the carpet one last obsessive time, sifting the debris, trying to see through the motes in the eye–a fine bit of dense human material for our pondering, k.

  6. lynn__ Says:

    “The viscous air we swam through”…wow, k, that describes mermaid-like dysfunction for sure!

  7. Oh this is a very cool glimpse of some mother-daughter bonds. Love the closing question…….very apt.

  8. M Says:

    yet it carries the essence of autobiography – the close observation, the regret, the words unsaid and too much said, even ~

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