To the Friend Who Sent Me Goodwill Forks as a Gift
I’m not embarrassed to live alone
with my three mismatched forks.
I’m not sorry you had to wash one
to eat the omelet I fried for you.
I want you to wait until your son
is asleep, then quiet into his room
to his bed’s edge & try to see him
without that cosmic nightlight
inside him, in a now that does not
involve you. As they do, my sons
outgrew me & the home-cooked
meals I might throw in their faces
for the way a single mother grinds
her teeth to pieces in broken sleep.
I’m breath locked behind wiredrawn
ribs. The dark welt of alone. Blemish
even to women like you who believe
they know what going it alone means.
Co-parenting. I keep waiting for
this dark fist in my chest to pearl.
I could be baptized a second time
just to let someone hold my weight.
God, how we ruin you with words,
though we like the rhyme of saying
meth den or meth head in theory
even if I’m cursed to see a hive
of bodies pulsating around the same
hanging dime. You cannot possibly
dream there’ll be a time when you will
be asked to wrap your spare silverware
& mail it to your son in his new city,
his new place, his new him, the sweet
smell of yellow smoke the only warm
blanket around his shaking frame.
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