#FiveMinuteFriday: Visit (a poem)

Family Poetry

//I remember our visits
mop and bucket slouched
in the corner of your small space
concrete floors, rosary above your bed
above your window, draped on your neck
the smell of pine-o-pine wafting through
like another visitor waiting to make amends

Your frail bones watching us
as abuela and I would scrub the floor
bleach the tub, bleach the sink
bleach the dishes, blue the sheets
our hands ripe, desperate
to keep you alive a bit longer

All five generations of us alive
in one small bleached, concrete room
filled with prayer beads and penance
alive with the death of things
Not one of us allowed by our full names

You – Ma Petra
Your daughter – Ma Mary
Your granddaughter – Carolina
Your great granddaughter – My ma – MaryNelda
Your great great granddaughter – Me

Each one a workhorse to make ready the sixth
My daughter never met you – Faith
And now we are four generations and no more visits//

I ran out of time of thoughts and memories of visiting my great great grandmother, Ma Petra. My memories of her were of us cleaning her room as if to scrub death from the walls, to keep him at bay. I appreciated today’s prompt. It brought back some wonderful memories of visitation and care.

It’s #FiveMinuteFriday at Kate Motaung’s place. The word prompt is VISIT. Above is five minutes of free flow writing. I’m not a prose kind of person at 4:00 a.m. I welcome your comments and thoughts.

The forward slashes (//) indicate where the timer started and ended. Your turn! Join us at Kate’s place.


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