Father

The first time I believed
was the day she died.

Like a dead deer on the road:
the antlers sawed off,
it’s belly tight with days of rot.

That triggers memory.

Flowers and formaldehyde
floated past me—
like a wind off a beach
that allows a hint of salt to pass by.

Seeing my mother was like that:
a small glimpse of what she could’ve been,
but not enough to actually know.

Maybe below the surface
was where God was—
no.
She’s just under dirt now.

Originally published in Midnight Screaming

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