Mother will sit at the table
in the cold white kitchen,
waiting for me to bring her
my book in which I write
how I dug up her bones
to take them back home.
She’ll be there, reconstructed,
like the faces of the houses,
with me wondering which tree
in the park that will never sprout
twigs again was her coffin.
My hand will smell of dirt
and rotten leaves as I turn
the pages looking for some proof
which is not a painted-over truth.
Knowing where she truly is perhaps
I’d forget where I must be.
She’ll say, I’ve never understood
any of your poems, and I’ll see myself
closing the book gently in her lap,
pretending I have the wrong page,
the wrong house, and the wrong city.