Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Jaime Seven!

{St. Jaime of Boozy Moms}

Almost daily someone confesses to me
that their mother is in alcoholic.
Stranger still is the tone taken
as though their mothers have hangnails
or are chronically late.
Having an alcoholic mother is apparently
of little consequence or its tragedytoo devastating to give proper voice
like having a hangnail
or being chronically late.

My mother, thank God,
is not an alcoholic. She has two drinks
and wants to braid my hair.
If I wore my hair up
would I be confidant to
this same secret?
My hips wide as a confessional,
in these sweat pants and boa
I may look like the product of a lush—
but pious? Knowing?
Sober???

I wonder if other saints are as
confused by their stations—
is St. Francis afraid of goats?
Much to the chagrin of the Holy Ghost,
do St. Jude and St. Luke try to trade posts?
St. Fiacre, I’m certain,
spends many a cold monastic
after-life night
wondering how he came to be
the patron saint of VD.

But if it helps, I’ll keep listening,
providing what comfort I can,
a blanket tossed loosely around
a soused snoring mother.

If I ever am a mom, I will
decidedly curb my drinking.
The crusts will be cut, the recorder
recital applauded, my bumper
reduced to the achievements
of my children.

Still there should be time,
when children move out
and husbands take up golf,
for an old lady
to down a quart bottle of gin
closed in her closet,
waiting for the hand of God
in The Creation
to come forth from Anne Klein separates
silently,
regally,
pointing to her missing shoe
and the Cinderella life that went with it.

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