benign pineal cyst

~for my mother who cannot sleep

I dreamt
I held her head like a baby,
thinking if I spoke gently
she wouldn’t worry she
had lost her body. Bodiless,

she didn’t notice, but I did. She
should be dead, I thought, though skin
had grown across her severed neck,
thin tissue tendersoft as scars,
so calm.  I felt she could live.

Sh, I whispered, brushing hair
back with my palm, kissing
her scented forehead,
It is okay, Mama. You
are okay.  There now.

Her expression a child’s
at the breast, eyes wide
and soft in mine, mouth sounds
making less sense, I talked
and rocked.

She slept.


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