Only Now Can I Admit

by Dannye Powell

how much I hated wheeling my mother
into her room after lunch and hearing her say
this is not my room get me out
we are trespassing we will be arrested

and I would argue look here is your bed
with the pretty coverlet you picked out
last week and here the wing chairs
you had reupholstered before your stroke
and there the cranberry glass lamps
you found at the little shop on Coral Way
and everything you love is right here see
the photo of your granddaughter on the dresser
silly to think of anyone else with an identical
and she would shake
her terrible white head this is not my room
this is not my room
until I wanted to scream
and now these dozen years later I see that indeed
we were trespassing though I saw no signs
in the hall or on her door no signs anywhere
that said we’d strayed into the wrong hemisphere

Published on November 25, 2014