phone call home

the dead air lightens

with familiar voice,



eyes glaze, I am

sitting on the cracked countertop

chai in hand,

– their intonation, so well-known,

takes me straight into that warm Sunday night, believing after Bible study.

as they speak, i see

the way she tosses her hair when she laughs

his crooked, Han Solo smile

Mom’s ticking steps through the halls

her upper lip curled under in her wide smile, the way it always does

when she’s really laughing – the way that I am now,

as they know just what to say.


Mid-joke, mid-laugh, the line cuts.

 I am holding an empty shell of metal and plastic to my face

straining, yearning

as the memories fade

and I am alone again in this icy silence, so much

colder after a breath of warm air.


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