chapter five

you will find me here quite still, the well of days braver than I having filled me to the very brim. the windows here let a draft seep through their cracks, and something about the brick muffles my heavy breath. the tears will come, toppling over the tips of me, flooding the room, drenching a silk shirt of dusty grey. rounding the corner, you'll find me and stop, well aware of the fragile, unnecessary frivolity and wondrous impracticality of this coveted shirt and the depth of soaking it. you'll whisper something about short days being hard for women like us. that's how you've come to call we two now that your sharpened eyes can meet my gaze. so I'll be weeping unattended as mothers often do, and you'll find me, as is the work of daughters, and will ask me why without speaking which is our softest talking. I'll hold you here silently. the moment may smell odd or feel a bit too warm, but you'll give in to my tight grip until words find their way up from the pits of me. I wrote on napkins alone, undisturbed, content for years, I'll say. I was happily transfixed by conjurings of my own making, and was, once, becoming the woman of my dreams. if I laced my bar-side, moonlit scraps together now, knitting the etchings of my girlhood into a solid piece, you might find me a wholly altered woman. perhaps you wouldn't know me, or like me, or be born of me. perhaps this bright, chilly den would belong to others or be filled with others or be entirely other. I was selfish without product, I'll eek out. I squandered my youth. I've little to show for six thousand one quarter hours of daydreams. salty tears will roll because your heart feels like home to me and I won't mind and you'll tuck a palm inside my wet, clinging lace, and you'll whisper these words. mama, you showed me the moon and counted the stars. you were quiet when I raged and bold when I was timid. you combed knots, ignored mess, started over again and again out of sheer determination. you know all my favorites and fears and the size of my shoes. and when I asked, you bought pink pillows for the crying room. and for one clear moment I'll see that you are the woman of my dreams.