Jason Shinder (1955-2008)
While the machine sucks the black suds
from my mother’s blood then sends it back
stinking clean into the pistol-tube nailed down
into her chest, I climb out of my shoes and slip
a cotton swab of water between her teeth,
her dentures sliding off the back porch
of her mouth. Nobody knows, never knows,
how she has to pee, wrapped in a diaper.
But can’t. The yellow eggs she ate one hour ago
already the shit in her bowels. And lonely,
But brave. But lonely. Because I did not stay all night.
Because I won’t. Because I’m going to pull out
the one bone that hurts the most and break the back
of every word I ever said to her. The world is evil, Mother,
and I am, too.