WHEN MOTHER WAKES UP IN THE GARDEN
she’s blue at the edges & her feet won’t touch the floor.
What difference does the year make. Isn’t she still
here. Isn’t she floating in her nightgown
coming in through the bay window
to face the couch as if sitting down hadn’t bled
from her timeline two sequels ago.
Where was the sun when we tried to make tea with it.
Where is it now that she’s moonflower open
like always. What to say to the missing. Do we stay
frozen in time same as them. Am I a child until someone kills me.
Was she. Did she die or get cut in the rewrite. Is she only in her trailer.
Could she fidget less in wardrobe. Talk back only between takes.
Take fewer breaks. Take off her dress for the burial.
Hang it over a chair. Slide her skin down a hole
& ride the darker skins of plums back to the outside.
Into the good dirt. Gone like she meant it. Isn’t she still.
Doesn’t she hate to repeat herself. Why bother dying more than once.
Can’t wring life from a cut rose unless you bury it. Did you think
of what might happen. Do you need to skirt the question. The distance
between our mouths & our mouths is opening. Did she ever
actually flower. Did she bother bearing stone fruit. Did she hum
or imagine her son chasing after her daughter with a hunting blade
or butcher’s knife. Would that make it easier. In the kitchen
they look more like siblings. Mother wakes up as a bruise
yellowed between her two children. What woman offered
old growth wouldn’t make a cutting. Try
a second time. Doesn’t she hate repeating
herself. Won’t she until the right version takes.