The Mother in the Mansion

I want you to create something beautiful, she says

stiff fingers sliding up the railing of these porcelain

stairs. She cups her hands over my face - mother, why

am I not enough?


I fell asleep inside someone else once; forbidden boy

climbing the slippery cuts on my windowsill to bring

me to this place. This beauty. This surrogate mother at

the mansion.


She takes pills; swallows them and doves carry her sad

song to me - across the halls of this mansion, where I lay

with him. Thistle and weeds, she canvassed a wedding gown

of pearls and her son tattooed rings on me - over my eyes,

in between my thighs. I'm his now.


Daughter, is her word for me - and wife is his. I linger,

blinded by the shouts. An introduction to the morning,

and an interlude to the shadows, (his arms.) I've been

split into two formal degrees of myself. How can I love

the lost feeling of happiness?