Mom, will you sit still?
I’m trying to conjure you
from the near nothingness
You flicker after
more than twenty years absence,
your voice slips
away, or is stuck on repeat-
always the same phrase,
a record skipping.
My fingers remember
your cool skin, the small expanse
of your back, your spine protruding.
Your scent quickly evaporating,
the clothes I kept, disintegrating,
your handwriting on paper,
silverfish baiting, remnants
of nail polish fading.
There is no one alive
who can fix you for me-
their memories failing
in their own degenerating.
So I ask you again: stop shifting
as I sift through photos, scraps,
your sheer Mom-ness drifting.
Come to me so I can flesh you out.
Beneath my graying temples,
in my brain’s blanketing folds
I hold you, still.
Betsy Mars is a prize-winning poet, a photographer, and publishes an occasional anthology through Kingly Street Press. She is an assistant editor at Gyroscope Review. Poetry publications include ONE ART, Anti-Heroin Chic, New Verse News, Sky Island, and Minyan. She is a Best of the Net and Pushcart Prize nominee. Betsy’s photos have been featured in RATTLE’s Ekphrastic Challenge, Spank the Carp, Praxis, and Redheaded Stepchild. She is the author of Alinea and co-author of In the Muddle of the Night with Alan Walowitz.
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.