The hot summer breeze
grates at my weak, ice cream filled, sun drenched thighs.
I think about how
I should be doing something productive,
like reading a book,
or thinking about something other than how I have to be
I wonder if my mother knows
she has a sunburn in the shape of a clock on her arm
and I wonder if I could use it as a sundial.
I admire her golden body,
her white cotton shirt stuck with the glue of sweat
onto her rolls of love.
I hear the winter squeaking under the rocking chair
and I remember that there once was a layer of snow
outside on my porch not long ago.
I think about how the present seems to be out of my reach,
but I can’t remember the past.
I check the time on my mother’s sunburn.
I wish I knew how to be someone other than myself.
Our mother always told us:
to drink our milk,
and wash our hands.
To build strong bones
and make strong bonds.
She told us to ask questions,
and look for the answers.
And to always remember
where we put our secrets.
They sift through the sand,
searching for lost calcium,
searching for lost stars.
Trying to bring them back,
trying to remember the present.
The tears circulate through their eyes,
down their cheeks,
and pool in their calcium deficient palms.
They want the milk,
the milk they gave their sons.
They want his bones,
and they won’t stop looking.
They search through the past,
coding the mysterious souls,
looking for the present.
The sky closes in around them,
protecting their dreams,
guarding their secrets.
They ask the questions,
and the sky sends them back;
They are eternal,
leading them forward to the beginning,
leading them back to the end.
The sea above them searches too,
and we are a second behind;
the present never reaching us in time.
Memory is the only connection.
looking for a white speck in the skin colored dessert.
The sand washes away the bones of the lost.
But they remember,
and always will.
Milk alone can’t make strong bones.
Age 15, Grade 10
Saint Ann’s School