Reruns Before the New Season

Sometimes I try to do as others always say you should do when you feel, say, your lip tremble for a split-hair second
when you realize that she never calls
And when she does it’s basically to pretend for whoever she’s around that I’m even a blip on her radar screen
throughout the course of her day-to-day goings-ons
As though she suddenly snapped out of some bout with amnesia
and miraculously remembers everything
as though she hasn’t been out of frame for the last several seasons of the show
Like she can walk back in
And demand the producers resurrect her character
from the most recent death she suffered;
the last being the fatal fall
she had when she slipped on a stick of butter
while making oatmeal.
Just one in a long, long list of necromantic revivals.

You get so tired of writing her
in and out of the cast
that you finally just say,
“Enough is enough!”
and resurrect her zombie of a character,
one last time…
…to be played by a different actress.
That way, you don’t have to worry
whether or not she will be on set for her scene
Or have to wonder
if she even cares that she is holding up
the entire production- cast, crew, staff, the writer (that’s me)
every time she injects herself
only to eject herself,
with a quickness like Jackie Joyner-Kersee
But then there is the sadness,
the whimpering emptiness
that she cuts out of you,
leaving a void of blistered lacerations
and pink, fleshy scar-tissue.

You ask yourself,
“What is the difference between now and then?”
trying to find the good memories
Of a time when she cared,
before she shut the world out,
before whatever cog shot loose
and she quit loving you
Which is the moment
the numbing truth of the matter sets in
and you realize
that you don’t recall any so-called happier days
Because she’s always been
like this, to some degree, on some level
And on some level, to some degree,
she will always be like this

But you will carry her weight,
not because she deserves it
or because she’s changed
Not because she’s earned it
or because she does or doesn’t call
to ask about your day,
your week,
your month,
your year.
It’s because she is your mother,
and it is what a son should do,
because you hope
that if the shoe were on the other foot
That she would
do it for you
Hell, that she would
do it for herself

But in the back of your mind,
you always knew
That life isn’t fairy dust and rainbows
And that those sorts of wishes
don’t ever come true
Hurting is this one’s heart
This story
My story
The story of a broken son
And his broken Mom.

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