To My Mother: Empty Bedside Tables


The wood is smooth and pale,
A tanny-pinkish color in the grey
Of a closed-blind bedroom -
One coaster, with flowers.

The comforter does little of that,
Carefully hugging a long fluffy pillow
Whose color I can't say for it is covered,
Always - covered and clean.

A child’s finger-paint hand
Houses dust from stale air
That hangs in half the room -
Precisely half.

It is my hand,
And my mother likely did not
Look up to see it wave goodbye -
It's still waving.

Beaded necklaces.
A stuffed elephant.
Baby pictures.
A Women's Devotional Bible.

I never bother to open the blinds;
My father likes them closed.
That way, you can't see the sun -
And you can't see the dust on the coaster.

And for goodness' sake,
It isn't even like she's dead;
We ate breakfast Friday morning.
Not dead, but she's still gone...

And I know that counts for something.
Otherwise the grey of the room
Wouldn't wring my heartcloth,
And I could enter without sighing.

I would give my real hand
For the table to be filled with junk,
And the pillow to be colored dirty,
And for my dad to want the blinds open.



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