The Evanescence of a Mother’s Scent

She asked me what she could do to matter. Her naked

Face wrestled on her upper arm and she bit her flesh

 Softly, failing at keeping her tears intact, silenced, dry.

 Surrounded by empty bottles and numb music, she evoked

Her own substance. And as her cheeks reddened and she looked up,

 I could see the love she had for herself in secret.


I held her hands in mine and sensed the nightmares traversing

Her flesh. She shivered covered in her loneliness and I shared mine

With her. How could she grow with everybody stomping on her once

She makes a move? She told me that love did that to her.

That her mother taught her how to misname things for everybody’s sake.

That her language had been deformed and abused and she looked for

Her own visibility on the bathroom floor, where her mother used to be.


Young Parisian Woman with Flowered Hat” by József Rippl-Rónai (1861-1927)

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