I believe in ghosts and angels and god or a burst
that made me from love. I believe in a city
where no one is hungry with houses made of native grass
and biodegradable long-term material and the color yellow.
I am inside one of these houses, the one my mother makes
as she disappears, she disappears in the making of it,
she’s surrendered, she holds desire by its neck.
She eats the cake, the salmon, the ramen, the drunk’s
final piece of bread, the glitter dress. Her mouth engulfs
a McDonald’s hamburger in the middle of night. She’s lean,
round-brush bangs, bleached blonde. Some years I don’t see
my mother then she appears, fearless, not afraid of god or distance
or the ground, not afraid of her own going, like I am.
Acrylic nails with that subtle pink so her hands look more soft
than strong. I believe in her hands. I can’t imagine a world without her
in it, eating and smoking. The Marlboro burns near a corner of her lips.
I can’t believe in a god who relies on wounds to be seen.
Copyright © 2022 Katie Marya
Used with the permission of The Permissions Company, LLC on behalf of Alice James Books.