Mandarin

My father stumbles in

Feet tripping over-

Heel toe, heel toe

At a quarter to 2

-Am, of course

 

My mother is asleep in her bed

When he tells me that

She can no longer be the one

Who makes him feel warm

Like Jack Daniels,

Or a woman named Elizabeth

 

She looks like my worst dream

Come to life

In mirrors

And salt

-when you’re supposed

to add a pinch

 

My father falls into blue black

Darkness,

Gets enveloped in

High heels and girls

Far too pretty for his values

 

He sees this,

Watches the years pass by

 

Like the time I kicked

Soccer on the field,

 

My mom brought the oranges

 

While this has gone away,

I feel his palms sweat

Clam up

Gone to sleep

 

Because it is a quarter to two

And I need to feel

The weight of my chest

 

The singing of the hummingbirds

In the morning

 

~

 

My mom wakes the next day

To a woman who no longer feels alive

 

I can not help to look in the mirror

And the woman on his dresser,

Dangling her legs

Like a person

Who never knew what it would be

 

How it would feel like,

To have a daughter

 

~

 

I feel sickness

Boiling

On the edges

Of my veins

 

Filling

Stomach

Pains

 

Filing

Folders

In the cabinet

 

Everyday

One

At A

Time

 

Until

My fingers are numbers

And my nails are painted

 

And my mother

Doesn’t think I’m pretty anymore

 

Looks at me,

As if I am

 

Talking to myself

In a mirror

Called

Self Respect

 

And the top of

My forehead

With a crease

 

The scar on my knee

 

The bent ankles and back

She calls

Disabled

 

Four times a day

Driving the car

 

Back and forth

Up and down

Bending

Farther

Until

I have reached the inability

 

To break

 

This poem is about: 
My family
My community
Our world
Poetry Terms Demonstrated: 

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