The Silence Between Us

The room is always cold
silent
when my mother turns on the light.
It’s too early, too bright
and my temper is relentless.
My voice is hoarse as I tell her to go away.
She yells back, stomps out,
and silence swirls between us
like bitter sand
until the next morning.

As time flutters through
our secret, humble lives,
my mother turns on the light
and silently disappears
before my eyes can open.
I swallow the hurts of life
before they surface on my skin
in fine lines and blotches
which only Mother sees —
I keep them hidden from her.
And then I question why the world feels so heavy
on my shoulders;
why fear stains the carpet of our “happy” home
like mud tracked in;
why love is unrequited before it even begins…

Because my mother wouldn’t wake me
Because my mother couldn’t wake me

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