What My Mom Should Know
It isn’t every morning when
I remember to call
“I love you!” To my mom’s back as she
Waves her hand over her shoulder and
Crosses the street,
Eyes down, looking down at her hands
Holding the leash.
Our dog, a pit bull
I gifted with the clever name of “Benji” at the age of thirteen,
Tail wagging, looking up at my mom
Because, my mom is his mom, too, and everybody knows it.
“I love you,” a concept creating an end to our conversation, a
“see you later” implied, an
“I’m glad you’re in my life” implied, an
“I’m not sure what love really is but I think you deserve the name” implied.
I forget, sometimes, to tell her.
I’m on my way to school,
futzing with my backpack straps that lash back, just never wanting to stay comfortable, sliding back down to the end of the strap,
Anticipating the subway ride ahead, the mean people ahead,
Twenty One Pilots’ “Holding on to You” blasting in my head,
Then, just then, my finger tips turn numb with something other than the Raynaud's disease I inherited from my mom,
a thought boiling with poison, not fun to think about because I am dreading the moment when
a bus hits my mom,
a man is mean to my mom,
Benji is killed in front of my mom, my mom, a beaming light herself,
The sun sets.
Her eyes turn dim, the blue that I inherited,
but not so much that people shade their eyes when they look into mine,
Her smile is gone, her laugh lines turn smooth.
I forget, sometimes,
To tell her I love her.
But all I need
Is for her to know it anyways.