Repeated Journey

 

Mommy, you forgot.

I watched all the mothers and their children walk hand in hand out the school gates.

 On the cold, hard concrete I sat

Waiting for you to realize there’s something you forgot.

 

Do you remember June 6th?

My classmates share stories of birthday cakes, parties, and presents.

I want what they have.

Singing the “Happy Birthday” tune,

The sound reverberating in the empty room

On the torn, unwelcoming couch I sat

Waiting for you to realize there’s something you forgot.

 

I recall the days you came to me drunk

Strapped me in the car before driving off,

Pulled up to the houses with the barred windows and fenced-in yards.

Time went on, and on, without your return.

On a stained, icy backseat I lay down my head

Waiting for you to realize there’s something you forgot.

 

Countless men came in and out.

I didn’t know knights rescue princesses so late at night.

Gunshots and screams serving as my lullaby,

Emergency lights serving as an escape from the darkness.

I can’t fall asleep without a bedtime story, Mommy.

How do I know there aren’t any monsters below my bed?

Underneath the thin, lonely sheets I hid

Waiting for you to realize there’s something you forgot.

 

Now I’m 16, Mommy.

I have a daughter of my own.

Her name is Nicole

I named her after you

She’s my world

I love her more than I’ve loved anything or anyone, but she’s still lacking love.

You see, she’s waiting for her daddy to realize there’s something he forgot.

 

And as I now stand at your grave,

I wipe the tears cascading down my cheeks.

You left me too soon, Mommy

There’s something you forgot.

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