mum has a toe that often dislocates,
as she’s coming down and mis-locates a stair or two,
she’s been known to stumble slightly with her ring-finger-toe askew,
stretched slightly and upright, like it’s waking from a bad dream,
with a moment sat on the bottom step it’s plunged back until it seems
like it had never sought refuge out of its own skin.
I found her in the alley behind the fallout shelter:
I’ve seen a twisted tongue or two and hers was always helter-skelter,
and I’ll bet she melted frozen rain before it became snow.
That’s a look I’ve seen and know
in the wing mirror of a car reversing.
She had pipe dreams that were stuck in the pipe-line,
fighting signs that there were blockages in the arterial components of her blood-line.
Listen, I didn’t plan to listen to her narratives and I’m ashamed of it,
I wanted her but not all the parts
of names that lit up her insides like a heat detector,
She’s always been thermodynamic;
and I’ll pick peppercorns of the kitchen floor with her until I’m sick over her cabinets.
I’ve never met a risk taker with so many safety nets.
But listen she’s shown me her bones like playing cards,
I’ve felt along the shards of them until I think I know their pointed to suit
and I’ll always disappoint, because I think it might be moot,
she’s looted her own history, and found the root and
I’ve pulled myself from my own socket
but left no pocket map to mark the place,
I’m pock marked in ultraviolet but never left a trace.
But an epistolary note in her last text wrote
I’ve seen dislocated toes before is what I’m trying to say
and I suppose I ought to relocate the joint through traction,
or wait a while and see if it pops back through action.
See that’s the laws of attraction