I write of things I keep:
soul-ache in boxes with hope,
and family troubles in nesting dolls,
and trauma with Worry Dolls under my pillow.
when I was eight years old.

Everything in my childhood happened
when I was six years old-
-or eight, or nine,
but- I never place memories
in-between.

I was in second grade and I lived in Seattle.
* helicopters * whirlygigs *
I remember my teacher had a curly mess of–
–auburn hair, and was mean to me.
I was misunderstood.
I couldn’t let
the insides out
my peacock bruises.

I put my memories
in a treasure chest made of hydrangea
petals I collected when I was a fairy pink and soft
and I buried them in the backyard.

_________________________________

In the backyard with the hydrangea
bushes green and blue puffs of white–
–and the cherry tree.
(Mother of Switches)
One time I got to pick my own.
I was afraid of picking one too big.
I was terrified of picking one too small.
Small like I was.

Welts live in the chest of petals
with the hurt
and my memories
in-between.

But He
My mother did not keep him with her
and she did not keep him with me
and my mother.
She did not keep me–
–with her.

I kept motherly care in my first purse
lost in a seafood restaurant in idontremember
I kept motherly love in a barrette
lost at Goth Night–
–Embers on my birthday.

I write of things I’ve lost.

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