Dearest Little One

I believe in regrief. I believe you and I will continue to regrieve the death of your mother. Recently we lost all four of our kittens to a fast moving, devastating affliction. In a week we went from joyful to devastated.

And I regrieved, the way I lost them reminding me of the way I lost you. The pain of one overshadowed by the pain of the other–even after 20 years.

Both griefs were characterized by my naive belief in the authorities in each case–the judge, the caseworkers, the lawyers for the lost daughters, the veterinarians for the kittens.

In your case I discovered that the entire system all the way to the state regulators was riddled with greed, prejudice, and corruption. You and your siblings were sold or bartered in exchange for federal subsidies for your care. Your adopted father had not only abandoned his first family, he had placed all of his assets in your adopted mother’s name to dodge child support. At one point he faced a jail sentence for failure to pay child support for his children. Things which should have hindered his ability to adopt you.

And the kittens?

Their veterinary clinic was indifferent, too busy. They were not seen in time. I could not get them any help until I found another vet, and by that time it was too late.

So in the midst of grieving for the lost kittens, I grieve for you as well–you and your siblings, you and your beautiful mother.

She had no chance in the rigged system. She had no chance but me.

And I was not nearly enough.

Rapunzel

you deserve

Truth clenched in both hands

For years I have puzzled

How would she know 

“The real story?”

The only “mother” she ever knew kept her locked in a tower

Named her after stolen

Salad greens

Tell your twin 

Running to Canada was the

line I could not, would not

Cross for love

Unlike a man we both know

Who crossed lines of  law and love 

Abandoned wife and children

Hid his treasure 

Said he could not pay

No fairytale love-

Story for his first wife

Little ones

there are records of these things

The faces of the abandoned are familiar to you now

Unlike your own mother’s

Who they kept from you 

Fear and sin will make an ordinary

Monster out of us all.

Sadie’s foster mother told me once-

They are Christians, you know!

Christians do not steal babies

Live lies

Or put their assets in their girlfriends’ names

But how would Rapunzel know that?

She would have to borrow her sisters’

Plaited hair

A ladder to

Set all three free

Then look for the small stones

Of Truth

Scattered along 

the long road 

Home.