After a childhood of moaning
and feigned fainting
and suicide attempts in my presence—
it’s hard to know
whether the call in the night
saying she is going to call an ambulance
is serious or not.
Personally, I can’t imagine
calling 911 for the runs
but my mother did.
When the paramedics arrived
they told her to stay home;
emergency would only make her sick
waiting upright for hours in a chair,
an IV jammed in her arm.
And now she’s on speaking terms with me again
which means the calls will start
the ones pleading and demanding
on who knows what whim.
She’s eighty and no sweet old lady.