MAD COW ON MAGNOLIA HILL
That mad cow way up high
on Magnolia Hill listening.
Brown-eyed, beautiful, strange dark red hair.
Peel, pull, slip, crunch – unaware
of the tender half-bloomed magnolias that
crush between her milky-white teeth.
Where have you gone?
Your dilapidated body sits anchored next to mine,
the kitchen table not meant for only two.
Saccharine words drip from rotting lips in a sickly whir.
Starving hopes, desperate ears hanging, hands kneading needing –
the polar bi-products of your ill mind.
But reality forges on,
like the brittle bone in your hip.
I want to help you. The real you.
But it’s hard to find someone
when you cannot find yourself.
That mad cow past the fence
below the valley deep.
Thistles mar her once-soft hide.
With coyotes she wails
confused — crying out.
Why do you say that?
Please stop, you’re scaring me!
I try to tell myself this isn’t you.
Mama tries too.
At night she lays awake making
excuses for your decaying soul
But the solidity of swollen truth
– it’s hot, and fresh, and loud –
expanding veins, inducing shivers,
I hear the vile words you whisper at her.
Come in child look close…
Ha! Do not be deceived
that is not art on the walls but
imprints of hatred
beneath glistening paint.
Halls: they echo they echo
That mad cow way down the silver creek,
through frothy water she
follows indecisive minnows’ paths.
Why are you leaving?
Sister, come back!
I miss your brown eyes and fanatic laughs.
I miss your shaky hands and gentle hugs.
I know we don’t share a father but
these words – these words
that flow so easily from our tongues
we share in the ichor surging through our veins
– the blood that our mama gave us.
Sister, I know you are sick,
I know you can’t help it,
but I am here, please try
. . . no?
Mad cow way up high,
on Magnolia Hill liste–
Not listening anymore.