Tag: Nicole Carey

And Other Lies I’ve Told

I called grandma today,

said I needed the solace only

a woman can provide,

short of mother’s lectures.

Grandma was at home.

I called grandma today,

she was cooking, 

landline kissing the rim

of her soup pot. Marbled meat stumbling

upon soft produce, tangled in herbs

bathing in the milky base.

“your mother’s favorite”

but I already knew that.

I called grandma today,

she was missing our 

sweet faces, the cheeks that 

she gave us

and the dimples she didn’t. 

Those were from grandpa.

She didn’t say she will see me soon.

I called grandma today,

her voice matched the

silky way mother always described it,

her honey speech, words of

nectar running towards the 

point of my chin.

I wanted to be sweet like that.

I called grandma today,

we made plans 

for peanut butter brownies,

dipped toes in the glassy lake

and tales wrapped in gold.

I called grandma today knowing

my chances, slim 

like her figure in a

freshly floured apron

and yet

I called grandma today. Now she lives

in pages greased 

with butter kisses in round

spots of lakes

her body a cookbook 

bound together with stories

of a Detroit Christmas in

slanted cursive. My only 

source of her

carrot cake language.

I Think My House is Haunted

I can’t shake the spirit who 

envies my bones- 

a frame to claim as my own

rattling the broken screen

out back

guiding bitter fingers down my neck.

traces of dancing apparitions 

invitations to the ceremony 

of black dresses 

burnt orange petals, the hush 

of remembrance.

we pass 

tear-stained glasses on the roof

blushed spirits

blaze

our throats like a ghost,

And listen

to another funeral.

the cry of wind instruments

the cry of broken mothers

Sisters, friends

counting cars in procession and creating

a life 

for the dead. 

I know what it’s like 

to live beside

the cold breath

of a graveyard.

I watch Sunday burials 

with bitter black coffee

rows

         of 

                headstones 

inch closer, blurring lines of living

seeking solace 

in the smoke that escapes

my lips in thick white ribbons, 

They tempt me to join them.

NOVUS Literary and Arts Journal
Lebanon, TN