Tag Archives: son

Astro Was Too Difficult to Say

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I searched for you
wanted to bring you home
and into our hearts
give my children something I never had
help them learn about dogged devotion,
joy, attachment
the responsibility that inevitably comes with love

I didn’t expect your moose-iness
or that you’d be part muppet, part Barry White
or that my son would want to die if you did
that he would create a whole religion based
off of your patience and unwavering fidelity
that when the world became far too overwhelming
the only chance he had to regain peace
was waiting in the fur of your neck
and the deep quiet of your dark eyes

NaPoWriMo Day 30

On Mothering A Son In February

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The belling pink flowers
in the ceramic purple vase
are still fresh
like your words

You grinned metal
as you rushed up the stairs
Saturday
bouquet in hand

When we hugged
my head reached
only your shoulder
The wonder of oatmeal

and years
a needlepoint of patience
with requisite tatters
eggs must be broken

Each day is played out
the same
you love me
you love me not

February 2016
Julie Ayers

sixteen

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because of the braces
his smile is closed tight
concealing

plaid is no longer cool
solid colored T-shirts preferred

when we talk
I tilt my head
back and up
and see chin

he has my brother’s eyebrows now
bequeathed

no more need
to flip socks inside out
seams touching toes
finally tolerable

he still loves his dog
more than anything
or anyone

still yells from his bed
for someone to come
scratch his head
when he can’t fall asleep

when he got behind the wheel
yesterday, driving
he asked me
if I was as relaxed as I professed
why was my right hand clutching the door

and he turned
a wide, sealed smile my way
blue eyes bright

April 2015
Julie Ayers
NaPoWriMo Day 14

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Koi

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Behind the cash register at the Royal Farm,
the blond boy with the big smile
and the baggie of pills in his pocket
who will be dead by 2:27 am,
his friends stopping the car
in front of his parents’ house
just long enough to leave his cooling body
next to the masonry pillar mailbox
where his mother will discover it
when she backs out of the driveway
early Saturday morning on her way to
the boot camp she joined
because she’s about to turn 50
and wants to enter
the next half of her life
with the same series of numbers
on the bathroom scale
that showed the day she graduated
from high school.

He took the job at Royal Farm
to show his dad
he wasn’t lazy,
saving up to pay his own way
to Cancun for spring break
since he hadn’t maintained the 3.5 GPA
his parents had insisted as condition
for their footing the bill.

The news of his potential existence
had caused his mother to sink
to the floor seventeen years prior,
sob with relief and a joy too big to hold
quietly,
his father kneeling next to her on the tile,
resting his hands gently on her quaking back.
She’d been trying to conceive for six years,
consulted a fertility expert
to identify any issues,
explore options.

She never ceased to love him
with that very same intensity,
even when he totaled the car,
twice,
forgot her 47th birthday and didn’t get a card
or gift so weeded the flower bed by the pond
instead,
or when he told her he hated her
when she grounded him for a full month
from electronics for buying online games
with her credit card without permission.
$682 worth of League of Legends and in-game purchases.

After his funeral,
she cuts her hair short
and rarely smiles,
drops out of boot camp
and spends most days standing
by the dining room window
holding an empty coffee mug
and staring out towards the pond,
the view of water
now almost entirely obstructed by thistle,
beds full of suffocating thorns,
choking out even the smallest bloom.

 

Julie Ayers
NaPoWriMo Day 28

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