Number 3 of 4

Saturdays With Father 3

Let’s see ...
It’s "Pretty Mother" this Saturday.
She’s lovely really.

Looking at her I get glimpses
of who my mother might have been,
What she might have had for herself after all
Under different circumstances.

This "Pretty Mother" is like my mother,
Her hair so blonde, like hers, but she's relaxed—
Without the phone company
Or the burden of husband or children yet.

She’s enrolled in some local Catholic college.
She thinks she’d like to teach.
“Catholics are the best in bed,” she whispers,

And I imagine her blue eyes are shining,
Her pale, pale skin, her lilting, barely audible voice.
Her bare breasts slung with medals of the Virgin.

And I too am prettier, sweeter than usual.
I watch myself wandering the hallway
Of our happy home in this sanitized rendition—

Father, beaming, and Mother pretty, free of worry.
We have done this to our sorrow.
Someone is singing, someone is painting the walls
Someone has called offering jobs.

We are imagining new lives, rehearsing them:
Practicing optimism.

Saccharine, unforgivable child, that I am.
I watch "Pretty Mother" prepare for my father.
He has dropped me off early for some reason
And I am left alone with her.

Sitting in front of the mirror with her
she asks,

“Do you like to watch your mother put on her face?”

I nod yes, though I am lying; it frightens me
Like almost everything does.

She smiles. She smells so nice.
She combs my hair gently,
The tortured tufts turning to golden threads.
Woe is me. Woe is my mother.

There is something here almost unbearable to see.
"Pretty Mother" makes my real mother seem
all the more drab when we arrive home,
flushed for the evening meal.

I, too, have been unfaithful to her,
And I am ashamed.

Father is slightly gentler with her than usual.

“What’s wrong,” he whispers to her,

But she just weeps.

Poetry by Ashe The PoetBay support member heart!
Read 167 times
Written on 2018-06-07 at 19:17

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A haunting read!

Jamsbo Rockda The PoetBay support member heart!
I enjoyed these then, and again now.

Lawrence Beck The PoetBay support member heart!
The best of the bunch. Absolutely devastating.