I lost my mother and then my metro card. A black pen,
single earring, more than the usual number of socks.
Where in the five-stage model is confusion –
dropping and breaking things, reading without
comprehension? Anger is there, but what of the rage
that shows up out of order, takes the corner chair and settles in,
preparing to eat everything: well-meaning people,
beloved people? I don’t sleep much anymore, but sleep
was never my forte. Three times in over sixty years
I disobeyed her: ate chocolate before dinner,
slept with my college boyfriend, stole what remained
of her lucidity when someone young enough
to be my child asked permission and I nodded, let them drip
the morphine she’d refused. A few times more I lied to her,
the last one when I said we’d take a short ride,
get the medicine, check out right afterward.
Go home again.
Laura Goldin is a publishing lawyer in New York. Five of her recent poems appear in the Spring 2023 issue of The Brooklyn Review; one is forthcoming in Driftwood Press 2024 Anthology, and one was a finalist for Best of the Net 2023. Others have been published or are forthcoming in a variety of journals including Apple Valley Review, Gargoyle Magazine, Mom Egg Review, and RHINO.