Charlotte Ballard

A Mother's Day Poem

My mother keeps a poem
That I wrote when I was
More than a child, but
Not yet a Woman.

In it, I praised her motherly ways
And calm hand -
Claiming that she was
The delight of my life and
My central love -
I lied.

What I had wanted to say,
What I needed to say -
Was to scream out for protection-
For her to run with me
To the hills, and borrow in deep.

I did not tell the secrets, even
In the thick of the lies
Where even a good eraser
Would not have dug them out.
What I needed was for her
To love me

To love me enough
To save me from the holes
I sensed opening up in
The vodka misted ground
A fog raising up from the
Ground of lecherous stares
And saliva dripped from a
Mouth that wasn't mine or hers,
To save me from the monster
In the closet, that opens
The door, that opens my legs
That opens my mouth
Pushing the dirt away
Tamped in by taunting voices
And love withheld.

She didn't.
And I didn't.
And somehow,
I survived anyway.

Submitted: Tuesday, February 07, 2006
Edited: Sunday, November 10, 2013


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  • Rookie - 3 Points Barry A. Lanier (2/22/2009 2:51:00 PM)

    Thanks for sharing as I remember my mom who passed away last year..I just wrote a little memory of her in 'Beware' hope you get a chance to read (Report) Reply

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