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2020-09-28T11:48:48-04:00September 26th, 2020|Musings on life|

A lineage of angry words

When I am angry at my children
it is not my temper
that rises
but the words themselves
like potatoes
rolling around
in a boiling pot.

Jesus Christ.
If I come up there and find it.
Hey, watch it.

I never spoke like this
before I became a mother,
but the words are familiar
because they are my mother’s words,
the harshness wrapped
in her voice.

I owe it to her to clarify
that she rarely got mad
and she made rhyming treasure hunts
and had laugh attacks with me
on the only day of the year
we ever went to church.

But when she was mad,
those were her words,
and though I didn’t know him,
I suspect they were
her father’s words
before that.

So it is that I learned
that words can wait,
like a dormant gene
for cataracts
or a saggy bum,
they can lay quietly
until they surprise even us
when they pounce.

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