Poetry

Loving You

It’s easy to love you

When I think of flour and your old prayer book.

 

Eight years old, and all I wanted was to sleep in your bedroom

Late nights of wrinkled thumbs, thumbing through wrinkled pages

Praying for family members, both known and unknown

Before falling asleep, feeling protected by the saints

“on the four corners of my bed.”

 

The flour was from baking with you

Using your mother’s methods, we would bake scones

Your hands covering mine as we moulded your mixture.

I was the Big Girl, helping in the kitchen, the woman’s role,

Always following your lead, your orders.

 

Eighteen years old and I neither baked nor prayed

I avoided your bedroom, afraid of what mood you’d be in

Afraid which flaw you will point out today.

I left the kitchen when you entered,

Avoiding hands that now make my heart speed up.

 

Today, I struggle to fondly remember

A childhood growing up with you,

A black leather prayer book and an old family recipe.

Because, today I am the Big Girl, finally seeing what a child couldn’t.

Twenty years old, and I rarely sleep in our house anymore.

 

It’s not easy to love you

Even when I think of flour and your old prayer book.

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