-cide 1920 1440 Sprout Conner

I know my mother loves me.

She tucks me in each night,
puts the thick wool blankets over my face,
her voice wasp-like as she reads
The Little Match Girl.

I know my mother loves me.

She makes me breakfast each morning,
cracks eggs into my open mouth,
pops her knuckles as they fry,
mixes in red and white spotted mushroom caps.

I know my mother.

She gets me ready for school each day,
forces canvas sneakers over threadbare socks,
clicks her tongue as she brushes against my bare arm
before shoving a matchbook into my pocket.

I know my mother loves―

the wet weight of cotton-snow,
the kind that clings to skin
like a child to a skirt.

Header photograph © Caroline Bardwell.

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