09.21.2018

Weekly poem on Trump Presidency

 

WILL HARRINGTON

Mom, I Need You Now

My mother’s heart killed her on October the 29th, right before Halloween.
However the scariest thing this year came later at the election,
I was still at college and I have never seen so many unopened bottles of alcohol.
I was still at college and I was going to come home from college to vote early
and she had been waiting for me. 

On the ride to the hospital which was
my first and I am sorry to report not my last Uber
I did not know what had really happened
so wondered to myself if there was time to get an absentee ballot
to vote from her hospital bed. 

I am still reminded of her often because my grief is young, as in,
I am still reminded of her by things I judge myself for being reminded of her by.
I can look at a bottle of moisturizer and smell it
while standing a hundred feet away
Because when I was young
Every night before bed I, or my now deceased mother,
would gently rub it on a little rash on my wrist. 

Then she decided it was a late-developing birthmark.

There are now only charlatans in this world who can let me speak to her.
—But Gorbachev is no charlatan!
The rare expert on both birthmarks and the failings of nations.
He will surely be able call up our dear mother Betsy Ross!
Let us hire him and pay his fee so that we may say:

Mom, we need you now
Hold us and tell us that this president is just our ugly birthmark
and not the rash of a greater sickness. 

We can stand to look in the mirror and see the birthmark,
alongside the other scars history has left on our body.
We have seen our birthmark before in the mirror,
just as we know the scars on our hands and legs.
We are brave and can face these things. 

Mom, we need you now
Because even though you are not a doctor,
you are our mom
and you know when to be truly worried.

—-

Will Harrington’s novel is not forthcoming and his only prizes are everybody-gets-one trophies from town soccer when he was a kid. He is a recent graduate of Harvard College and now teaches English at an independent day school in Connecticut.

—-

 llustration:  anna_croc01

llustration: anna_croc01