And I can’t take it
when you say that,
so I have to go back.
I go right back
to what got me through,
back when my mind
was resting in the pocket
of a madman.
I would pretend
that you were there
and we would talk all day.
And you were always
and I was so very unwell.
And I would ask,
“Is that hot?”
“It is hot but it’s not hot, okay?”
“What do you mean?”
“Well it is hot but it’s not hot, okay?”
And taken as given we’d carry on
while daylight danced on daffodils
and I borrowed a smile
from a spirit.
“It’s The Tweenies.”
“I don’t love this.”
“I ‘dust’ do.”
“I ‘dust’ don’t.”
“But I ‘dust’ do. That’s why it’s got Milo in it,
that’s why he’s really funny,
that’s why I ‘dust’ love it.”
“But I ‘dust’ don’t love it.”
“You ‘dust’ love me, don’t you?”
“Yeah. Do you ‘dust’ love me?”
“Well I love you and Milo the same.”
“Uh! I ‘dust’ love you, I do.”
And as I was spoon-fed memories
by the ghosts of my past,
my eyes rolled off the moon.
But they never let me down.
They came back everyday
and they brought you with them.
And I would ask,
“That, there in the window?”
“Ha, ha, ha, it’s you and me and me and you.”
“It is it is you and me and me and you.”
“And I’m big up here on your ‘solders’.
I’m bigger than everyone”.
“You’re the biggest of all the little girls in the world.”
“I’m gonna stay on your ‘solders’ forever.”
And that’s where I am and that’s where I have to be
when you call and with your mother’s words
you tell me,
“You’ve never done enough for me.”
And I can’t take it but I can’t rest.
For I know that if I do, in front of me will pass
a thousand unaffected bastards
who really don’t care,
and none of them look like me.
And you don’t know and you’re so young,
and I get that’s it’s not in your way.
But I remember everything.
When the clerics cashed checks
and chased witches.
When the fear was ordered in front of the man in the wig,
And every time she just moved.
But you call me and you tell me
that you love your school
and your friends
and your home.
And I know that you’ll lose it all again
with one signature on a summons.
And I know she is a pro and that
her lies are so perfect that they’re priceless,
and that if I come, they’ll throw me in jail
and from there it will be back to the pocket
of that crazy bastard
who never seems to die.
So I don’t fight.
Everyday I cripple my soul
for minimum wage
to put food on your table
and clothes on your back.
Then I go home to beans and bread and an empty bed.
And it’s phone calls and letters
and whatever I can get.
And it’s begging a bastard
for a picture or two.
And it’s one week in five years of begging
and dying inside.
And then you call me and say,
“You’ve never done enough.”
“I ‘dust’ did everything I could,
I’m sorry that wasn’t enough.”
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