We speak of this over decaf
coffee, over countless afternoons
as the sunlight simmers, as the shadows
stretch slowly like a cat across the carpet…

 

We speak of this over decaf
coffee, over countless afternoons
as the sunlight simmers, as the shadows
stretch slowly like a cat across the carpet.
My mother recounts her childhood
the babysitter with bullying fingers
probing her holy youth. My mother
recounts another man, the one her mother
insisted she trust. She clutches
her knees to her chest, gazes out
the warm glass windows.
She asks about my first time.

I shrug. Flashback to eighteen.
College dorm room, ash trays
in his living room. The mawkish sting
of his touch. It was nothing, really.
I tell her of my best friend’s father,
how her mother still asks if she’s lying.
She tells me of her best friend’s cousin
how he vanished when everyone found out.
The clock yawns, time nestles into our ears.
She sips the coffee. I sip the coffee.
I am so sorry for you, she whispers.
I shrug. This is being a woman, right?
The predictability of this violation,
like a period. Like a right of passage.

I sip the coffee. She sips the coffee.
The shadows stretch their lazy bones.


Megan LeAnne - HeadshotMegan LeAnne (Twitter/Instagram: @ML__Poeta) is a poet, teaching artist, and performer from Nashville, TN. Her writing has appeared or is forthcoming in Tinderbox Poetry Journal, SAND Journal, Flumes MagazineNative Magazine and Versify Podcast. She currently serves as a Poet Mentor for Southern Word. She believes in you.

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