When Mary talks now on the Fisher-Price phone of loss, she speaks with a five year old’s falsetto. She is breezy, upbeat even, and we exchange pleasantries through the medium of her daughter’s voice.
Mary, the girls have your laugh, I try to tell her before the line cuts off. Mary, I always wanted to be your real mom, I tell her before the line clicks off. Mary, that last day haunts me. The girls talk as though you still have the giant carnival unicorn, as though you tucked it under your arm and carried it right through
The earth will soon dissolve like snow/The sun forebear to shine/But God who called me here below/will be forever mine
pretend you are a stranger and I am one of those uneven folk you meet at a coffee shop almost from the moment you sit down I have begun to tell this unraveling story about children left alone in a locked room for hours and a fire and a crooked judge, a baby filled with light and her mother, a figure unfairly edited out of all the relevant fairy tales who then ends up dying, not “poison apple” but poison nonetheless and when they come for her with all the accoutrements of salvation there is none left for her, no magic, no fairy godmother, no antidote as the EMTs say oh, it’s (only) Badamo…which is why I, this intrusive stranger, ramble on and on in the coffee shop jamming words into the dam of unrequited