7 | 13

7 | 13

A Poem by Taylor St. Onge

Epistolary poem to my mother.


You broke a wishbone with my father nine months before 
my birth and I am the outcome of the small trophy you
held onto when you lost to his larger luck line.  Sometimes
I wish that you didn’t make such a
sacrificial lamb of yourself.  Sometimes 
I wish that I could dig my fingers into my skin 
and rip out every single vein that looks 
too much like pisces fish, like amethyst bracelets, 
                      like rotting cadavers.

Mother, I don’t think that either of us have ever been
too good at doing what is expected of us.

You wild horse, you wild heart, you wild storm--
there is a lighthouse somewhere north
from here that overlooks the lake, and I can’t help
but marvel at the fact that you get to be the
light that calls us home when I can still see you
sitting in your locked car until the garage door closed.  

(A hummingbird’s heart can pulsate 
up to 1,260 beats per minute and now, I think,
so can yours.)  Your ribs 
were not enough to hold your
                      ticking clock
in one place.  Mother, your teeth were not 
strong enough to hold your words inside--from you, 
I have learned resistance in the witching hour; 
from you, I was taught how to build a 
backbone in the hour of the wolf.

You cut off a rabbit’s foot the day I was born,
but that foot was yours all along.  I am 
walking around, trying to find the rabbit, trying to
give it back, but I fear that I am 
falling down a hole my father dug with his bare,
          blood            stained            hands
years and years before my sister was born.  
Sometimes I wish that you didn’t 
turn my childhood into an enigma.  Sometimes
I wish that I could dig my nails into 
every slipping memory, every unfinished story,
                      every last word,
and rid myself of the doppelgänger I found
in the looking glass of your bedroom.

There is a secret to being holy, I hear, but
I don’t think Jesus will share it with me.  I stepped
on your grave five years ago now and 
I don’t think you have forgiven me since. 

Mother, I have never been too skilled at 
                saying, “goodbye.”

© 2014 Taylor St. Onge

Author's Note

Taylor St. Onge
Please give me any and all constructive criticism you can.

My Review

Would you like to review this Poem?
Login | Register


Great job! The poem caught my attention with it's title and the way it is written. Kepp it up!

Posted 8 Years Ago

1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Share This
Request Read Request
Add to Library My Library
Subscribe Subscribe


1 Review
Shelved in 1 Library
Added on November 20, 2014
Last Updated on November 20, 2014
Tags: family, angst, luck, good, bad, mother, father


Taylor St. Onge
Taylor St. Onge

Milwaukee, WI

Hi. I like literature a lot. more..