"goodnight," she says
her head is fixed between the wall and the door
floating and funny
i do not turn around
she looks across the room to the mantle
"goodnight," she mutters
and leaves the room.


"so that's the way it's gonna be," the ragdoll says.
inside my heads she's knocking on my eyes
"are you just going to sit there?
aren't you gonna go to her?"
in her blazen button eyes
i swear i can see the future
or is it simply the disfunctional head
sitting on my shoulders.
"she's your mother," says the doll again.
"you are connected whether you like it or not."
she falls back into herself, collapsed
stagnation settling
only to find me again at the next vulnerable moment.


and in me the words fail.
i step off the edge of this pier
because there is nothing else to say
mother and i we are dancing
on tiny frayed thread
"mother i cannot look you in the eye."


i once saw a picture
close-up, slightly blurred
your eye shot clear to mine
a straight arrow of realization
i see resemblance
in the fold of your lid
the crease of your brow
but i cannot see you in me
when i look in the mirror
"who am i?"


grayness seeps into your wrinkles
oh god i wish i could just kiss it gone
we never hug good night
or good morning
or goodbye.
"i'm sorry."


slowly i rise from the chair
the bolts of fading chaos
coming out of my ribcage
and when i see her there
eyes fixed upon a screen, immobile
i lean against the threshold
"come close"


the rivets of her cheeks
mean every hour spent providing
nurturing, unrequited love
"you can never love me like i love you."
my face folds into her shoulder
soft, used, old
hands across shoulderblades
eyes upon necks and cheeks
"i'm sorry."


hands on hair
looking me in the eye.
"what for?"


"not so sure."
tiptoeing across sleep ridden hallways
morning dew already on my windowsill
the night growing old
oh i wish i could understand you now
i hope it is not too late
when i finally can
"oh mother there are no answers."


"of course not, of course not."


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