Now the splinter-sized dagger that jabs at my heart has
lodged itself in my aorta, I can’t worry it
anymore. I liked the pain, the
dig of remembering, the way, if I
moved the dagger just so, I could
see his face, jiggle the hilt and hear his voice
clearly, a kind of music played on my bones
and memory, complete with the hip-hop beat
of his defunct heart. Now what am I
supposed to do? I am dis-
inclined toward rehab. Prefer the steady
jab jab jab that reminds me I’m still
living. Two weeks after he died,
a friend asked if I was “over it.”
As if my son’s death was something to get
through, like the flu. Now it’s past
the five-year slot. Maybe I’m okay that he isn’t anymore,
maybe not. These days,
I am an open wound. Cry easily.
Need an arm to lean on. You know what I want?
I want to ask my friend how her only daughter
is doing. And for one moment, I want her to tell me she’s
dead so I can ask my friend if she’s over it yet.
I really want to know.
—from Rattle #41, Fall 2013
Tribute to Single Parent Poets
Alexis Rhone Fancher: “‘My mom and I divorced my dad,’ I overheard my four-year-old say. It knocked the wind right out of me. I got it, that it was the two of us against the world, a single mom and an only child. For a long time, we were thriving, invincible. And then, we weren’t. Joshua Dorian Rhone was diagnosed with epitheliod sarcoma, a rare type, in 2004, and died in 2007. He was 26 years old. ‘Over It’ is one of a series of poems written in his memory, attempting to make something positive from my grief.” (web)