Mother of pearl
struck a ruby eyed reef
quickly sank into the deep,
just shy of the cay of life.
Hazy legend has it,
I was keyhole witness...
don't recall how young
but small enough
to fit under the kitchen sink..
Don't remember much about her,
those that did have long since blown away,
dad never had much to say about the sinking.
Ancient pictures seduced my curiosities..
whispered she had sunset red hair
a mother of pearl smile..
diamond chips set deep in lonely eyes...that's about it
Soon after the sediment of death settled,
"wrecking ball mom"
swings into the salty blue mix...
Dad must have been moon rock lonely
because he only waifed the soft, silky pretty
not the pyrite hearted
by cold, cold fires....
A much to young, to cuddle a half orphan, kind of bride.
In public her voice cooed ,
"I'll buoy your little sinking heart,
with a million butterfly kisses
chocolate chipped wishes"...
but in private
she plotted to carve a granite man
out of a wandering lamb,
who never really needed carving
only a little gentle kneading
on the potters wheel of life and love.
I spent a healthy wedge of childhood
treading a rolling ocean of dorsal fin coldness:
cutting a backyard full of weeds
with a pair of rusty hand shears,
rescuing favorite toys from the garbage can
staring into plates of things I didn't like to eat.
like asparagus my least favorite "anti-treat".
Everyone would drift into the living room
to frolic away the evening
but I was chained to the chair...
gazing into a saucer filled with devil spears..
At times I sat so long the food would harden
into the face of mother pearl,
her sweetness trapped between rows of bitter things..
a gone forever kind of look in our mutual deadened eye.
Most of the time wrecking ball mom won the food battles.
Rarely did the little boy under the sink come out on top.
One night I'm sparring with the devil spears... again,
deciding on a whim, to slide them under the table,
into the willing jaws of my beagle friend.
Chalk one up for the half orphan...right?....Not so fast.
The next day I shuffle home from school...
wrecking ball mom is frothing in the doorway,
wants to show me something..
She quickly leads me under the kitchen table
and to my ,deep green, horror..
there lay a small forest of day old asparagus..
Seems this is the one thing my best friend didn't care for.
This is when I was first introduced to
wrecking ball's wicked handiwork,
that would often rouge the face and back,
but cunning enough not to crack the lamb.
I saw "hitting stars" for the first time,
I swear a cluster of explosions went off inside my head..
Carving a man out of a paper lamb
was a long and painful sort of task.
In a way I felt lucky because, for a moment,
I thought she was going to rub my nose into the regurgitation,
Just like the time she rubbed the nose of my best friend for pissing up her new bride carpet.
By the way, dad (the swing shifter) was oblivious to these rougings ...
its ok dad your fully forgiven for wearing those rose colored glasses,
we all must wear them at some point in time-to deflect the offal of life.
Anyhow, that was many years ago...
doesn't really matter anymore,
I've outlived a half dozen or so best friends.
the wrecking ball's backhanding and black belting days are over.
She's silver headed and soft as a plate of over cooked veggies...
Every time I visit, I fantasize about rouging her...
until she sees that same pack of hitting stars...
wham- wham until she cracks.
You know, carve an old step bride
into an under the sink child.
rub that nose in yesterday's piss in honor of my best dead friend.
Unveil those wrinkled whips disguised as hands,
for the whole rosy glassed world to finally see.
but that fantasy will forever go unfulfilled...god willing..
So instead I offer her an atlantic-cold hug instead.
just like any good, semi-forgiving step man would do.
Now, I'm heart deep
in the meloncholy mist of fatherhood..
To this day, I won't touch asparagus
never rouge the lamb-