I hunger

I hunger
to be free of the pain
which eats at me
every time I see my children
in knee-bending oblivion
lying
denying
laying insipid alibis
at my feet

I hunger
to be free of the pain
which eats at me
every time
I think of the needles
that stab their skin
stealing their
potential

I hunger
to be free of the pain
which eats at me
every time
a friend asks me
if they are well
or I get a schizoid text
from my daughter
or my son promises
he’ll be with me in a minute
but leaves me waiting
all evening, and
I don’t cook dinner
as it will be cold
long before he gets here.

reminders of their childhood days are too painful to face, I have hidden the baby pictures, the framed school photos, the holiday snaps, those smiling faces caught so long ago by the click of a camera

I blank out the memories of their first steps,their hopes, their successes, their trousers, their dresses, the soft feel of their tresses, their teddies, their toys and their games. I aim to forget that I ever dreamed, that I ever expected their lives to be better than they have become, because therein lies a trap with teeth of steel that will swallow me up in an instant

I hunger
to be free of the pain
which eats at me

Written for The Sandbox Writing Challenge #33 “What do you hunger for?”

©Jane Paterson Basil

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