Purple Toothed Grin

Month: May, 2014

7-2 Rangers

Car horns and fireworks
didn’t wake the baby tonight.
My house is quiet but so is the city.
A bittersweet victory; a bittersweet loss.

Pink Elephants poop on my parade

What truth is she after, this
writhing, twisting, squawking
little warden? I can only whisper,

Please let me sleep. I don’t
know a thing. Please let me
sleep
, into her little ears but

they are like beautiful seashells
carefully selected and collected
but forgotten on a shelf and she

does not hear the salty winds or
crashing waves and she certainly
does not hear my pitiful pleas.

She shows me 1am, 2am, 3am
(perhaps mistakenly assuming
I have never seen them before)

then awakens again at four
and five; (through gritted teeth)
this cute, tiny alarm clock is

stuck on snooze. My mind is
playing tricks on me; nursery
rhymes become tongue twisters

and I hear sinister voices in the
noise machine; I’ve called her
seven names and none of them

are hers. Through drooping
eyelids heavy with fatigue and
the weight of this tiny girl, I

see the world through
my mother’s eyes.

The morning light comes
in through the window and
her crib casts a shadow upon

us that befits the tortures con-
tained within her little room.
The sleeplessness overtakes me

and a salty tear sizzles down
my burnt out face and lands
neatly in her neat little ear and

I think she must have finally
heard the ocean because it has
lulled her to sleep. Tomorrow

I will tuck an illustrated copy
of the Geneva Convention in
among her kids’ books since,

while not technically deemed
torture, international law
considers sleep deprivation

a prohibited ill-treatment and
I will read it to her before bed
appealing to her sense of childlike

innocence.

Prickly

I shaved one leg today
a Mother’s Day miracle
can’t wait until next year
when I can shave the other.

finger can-can

those endless evenings
when everything feels
just out of your reach

and even Netflix
would require the
use of muscles
in your index finger
(which are actually in
the palm of your hand)
but your fingers
are too tired
from a long day of
pointing out the holes in your life.

so you make a bad joke about swiss cheese
before you remember you are alone.

and your smartphone sits
at the wrong end of
the coffee table after
you reached for it
when it buzzed
and it was just a Groupon
for a tasting menu to share
so you left it
where it was

kitty corner to your misery
precariously close to the edge
and you stare it down

waiting for someone to call
so you can watch it
hit the ground
and not pick it up.

one more message
saved to your voicemail
that you won’t listen to
before returning the call
(10$/mo. extra add-on
money, well, spent).

you used to measure your life
in achievements
then in pints
now in tubs of ice cream

and you never realized
until tonight
that fingers have no muscles

except the ones that make
your hairs stand on end.

Post-mortem

The month of April
gone
and with it
the daily prompts
(that got me out of my bed and into my head in the good way like the good pain after exercising when you discover new muscles and poke at them flinching with pride.)

In truth, I
rarely followed them
but dutifully
got on the starting block
and with a giant leap
dove into unknown waters
sometimes to sink
sometimes to swim.

From the depths
I pulled out a handful of treasure;
nuggets
still a little dull
from their long sleep.

But I take solace in the belief that there are countless other treasures down there
lining the sea floor
waiting to be discovered
by me
or carved
out of a shark’s belly.

Guilt

Will my little girl
(having outgrown all her onesies)
look in the mirror
and, seeing the mistakes
her mother made,
smile in recognition of
the frailty of humanity
because of the
mistakes she
didn’t make?
Or will she
shed a tear
not yet
understanding
that we are made up of
mistakes
(not molecules as they will
teach her in science class)
bonded together?