Tuesday, August 17, 2010


My mother grabbed one of my swinging feet,
sighing, “Will you hold still?” I complied
reluctantly. I sat in the loveseat

watching a white tornado whirl outside.
The shadow of a snowplow thundered past,
rattling things so violently, worldwide

collapse seemed imminent. Her great glass
swan—usually so calm, so cool, so blue—
tinkled on the end table til the last

of the Apocalypse subsided. “You
aren’t going anywhere—except upstairs—
if you do not sit still.” What could I do?

I handed my foot over as one shares
a Klondike Bar: with resignation, like I chose
to cut my joy in half, accept her cares.

I look down at her hair. I suppose,
I would have run out barefoot then if Mom
held me less firmly. When I curl my toes,

she straightens them, her fingers hard and warm.
She wrestles with boot zippers as you see
men wrestling at an alligator farm.

Blizzards are like lizards, seems to me,
cold-blooded things, all teeth and tails. The way
the wind just flops around so stupidly

is purely reptile. Not mom. I would pay
to see Tyrannosaurus going toe
to toe against her spatula today.

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