All posts filed under: Poetry

Conceiving Basil

You are going through a workbook. Used to these. The finitude of a heavy hand and your mother’s equivalent joy on a double-checked page. You are careful to print clearly. Careful not to mark up the desk under your paper. The imprint of a mistake has the potential to ruin you.  You are asked to give your birth father a name. Immediately aware that your imagination is insufficient. You are conscious that the adjectival names you give your stuffed animals will not do. And that he, your very father, only-father, had barely existed until this page accused you of forgetting him. Guilt slams. Later, you realize that this was probably scripted by a white psychotherapist who considered their specialty to be working with international adoptees. You are wondering who existed first for you: your ghostly father or the ghostly psychotherapist. You are taking down the book of baby names to give your father form. A high shelf and jumping to your mother’s height. There are few ways to conceive that are more lifeless and absurd …

The Naming

I don’t remember what they look like, the boys who surround the row where I sit alone on the bus. I don’t remember how many of them there are But I know they are all white. Because I am the only kid on the bus who isn’t. And I remember what they call me. My house is near the end of the route. Every afternoon I ride the bus for nearly 45 minutes, up and down country roads. The speed limit tops out at 35 miles per hour, and there is no yellow line in the center of the pavement and no street signs at the intersections. “You,” the boys say, “Are a Black Fart.” I say nothing in response. I do nothing. There is nothing for me to do but sit quietly staring ahead and not draw any more attention to myself than my skin is already doing. Willing the bus to go faster so I can get off. When I get home I tell my mother that some kids on the school bus …

Three Poems | Heather Hauck

Upon Meeting My Mother In my mind we sit across from each other in a crowded restaurant. The curve of your back reflects against the dark moonlight, a printed silk scarf holds the wisps of your gray hair away from your round face. I slowly memorize the lines around your dark thoughtful eyes, the shape of your delicate olive-skinned hands. I imagine I would see a reflection of myself-a glimpse of my truth revealed in the rhythms of your voice.  With a tense breath, I hesitantly ask if I clinged to you when you rocked me to sleep. I wonder if I lifted my head when you walked into the room. And did you kiss me before you said goodbye? Maybe you don’t remember but my body never lets me forget.  Words of forgiveness stay buried deep inside my mouth so instead I chase your shadow in my poems; let the grief shatter like broken glass leaving fragments of myself behind  while I wait for the answers I know will never come. What I Tell …

Time

Once there was a man named Time He lived at the monkey display near the lemurs The man was old as dirt He loved the animals more than he loved another creature Time wanted to do something special to honor other animal supporters who like animals more than people. He decided to play a trick on the students Time stopped!  He took great elephant’s lead and made unusual times develop on Earth He never stopped really But he made the humans slow down He rotated through numerous obstacles each day wondering when the people would learn their lessons Time didn’t take credit though Thanks for reading! If you enjoy Raising Mothers, please consider becoming a sustaining member to help us remain ad-free. Invest in amplifying the voices of Black, Asian, Latine(x), Indigenous and other parents of color at our many intersections. Tiers start at $5/month and reflect your financial comfort.   

depressions of symptom

If I ever become an acclaimed writer, I’d worry about the interviews because I don’t know many words. I don’t speak well. The interviewer might ask me about motherhood. I don’t know what I’d say because I don’t mother well. I stay in bed until it’s time for my child to eat and bathe. I tell them to eat and bathe from my bed. Doorbell eviction bell baby wipe showers. sheetsmattressconcaveprison. thesheetsrecyclemystink. sheetsdriedmenstruation. thesheetsaremyplate. Mush inside chrysalis, I hope. Thanks for reading! If you enjoy Raising Mothers, please consider becoming a sustaining member to help us remain ad-free. Invest in amplifying the voices of Black, Asian, Latine(x), Indigenous and other parents of color at our many intersections. Tiers start at $5/month and reflect your financial comfort.