June 6, 2019. 

my mother's journal

you burned my mother's journal

all her secrets, all her thoughts, all her emotions

hidden in life, scorched in death to spare others of truth

my mothers white lies she told me turned to black ash


and you slept at night,

allowing me to hide her jewelry from hungry hands

ones that wouldn't even hold hers while she was alive

i was a child, clinging to a purse at my waist weighted with her belongings


digging out my lunch money and seeing her favorite watch,

digging into my wounds trying to find the source of my pain,

and saying it wasn't the bullet

but instead, the reason it was there


they asked if i wanted to see images of her from the accident,

they asked if i wanted the casket open or shut,

they asked where she should be buried,

but forgot to ask about, or even inform me about, a journal 


and i always wondered where my cousin got a copy of a poem my mother wrote,

always weeped knowing i didn't have one of my own,

and asked my mother's tombstone

why she yelled at me when finding emily dickinson quotes inside my jacket pocket


only to realize it must have striked fear that those words were my own

because to have a voice is a powerful thing, a terrifying but beautiful gift

that she has passed to me, unknowingly

and i refuse to let mine burn


Poetry by aidan haskel
Read 354 times
Written on 2019-06-06 at 21:08

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These are powerful words.