Did you Hear?
“Did you wake up last night to the dry brush of the wheels too low to touch?”
“No Ma, I woke up to the pants of tired chubby sick children who have crusty liquid in their lungs.”
Ma touched her toes, then reached to touch this sky. “And the night before, did you hear the leopard’s paws make pretty thumb prints? They were the cause of the cries of babes with their calloused hands on their too sweet, soft, tormenting skin.”
Baby Jo, heard his Ma out, but knew what he heard that night two nights ago. “I heard Mary’s dad say that her mother was once better before she drove herself away. Then Mary said ‘I never want to look like my own blood, even the one far away, the life lived on some other planet.”
“What about one week ago, were you there when two cheeks touched and those brains above those cheeks wondered if this was real? When veins came out of arms like weeds come out of powdered ground? Did you see how he waited for waves of itty bitty talk to weave their way through this brushed out brown?”
“Sorry Ma, I missed it. Did you say one week ago?” Ma moved the way she sat, and nodded her crafted head out of bark and dirt and sixty cent seeds.
“Ma! That was when the happiness of the holidays blistered their eyes, their ears and made marks on their skins of little babes. The beatdown, the take on take made them all sick. They had too many marshmallows with their sweet potatoes that day. They had a final say of what will come next week when the next holiday makes its way under this bridge of fragile glass.”
“Baby Jo, I want you to caress their hard bridged noses with your whiskered wings. Tell them Ma is coming. Soon, metal will fall as it once was before he came and made it this. This will once become what I knew it to be. This sky was green with the jewels we once choked. Don’t you wonder Jo, why is this skirt red, ears red, waste brown, cows brown? Look at what happened two weeks ago.”
“Ma, I was there two weeks ago. Now I know all that you have been taught and you no longer have to teach me.”
“Jo, I still do, when instead of a delicate tea cup with warm pink sweets, you see a cracking tower with seventeen floors. That is no good.”