Your mother did not stay
Like the pain
that arrests your chest every noon.
When the night was young
as the yawn on your tongue
She felt your breast and counted your ribs
She left kisses on your head
and trailed her tears down your mouth.
She broke your bones with prayers
her hot breathes on your skin
That was when she said “forgive me”
In the morn, she held your face and wept in it
“You smell like him”
You were over the sink wiping the salty tears from your face
Catching your reflection in the mirrors
Oh how you smiled like him.
You ask her, after prayers
When the scent of god still clung on her sleeves
How can I leave his shadow?
How can I end this?
Her smile breaks slowly like dawn
And you know there’s no answer
You know you will carry the feet of your father to every room
And when you sing, you will tear the peace from her eyes
Like a ghost .
So when she did not stay
You did not cry
You did not wait for pain to sit with you
To break her words for more meaning.
You did not search your eyes
for the remainder
Of her prayers.
You waited for the howling of dogs
The sight of young lovers
And the sound of your heart failing you again.