Linoleum was cool under my small feet,
kitchen walls drenched in yellow light–
half-light, suppertime light
light folding in on itself, dusk-foraging
sundown, bird tracks tracing musky
You stood like a kildeer before me, sandy-brown feathery hair
framing your 8 year old face, sharp shoulder bones
and feather-slips of memory;
running from your family nest
to mislead harm.
It was my palm you said.
The reason I am here.
He held it to the the stove, my punishment
for stealing. (But I didn’t steal, you said.)
I think now of our magical thinking
back then. How children believe:
we made it happen.
He said you did it. So you did it.
Isn’t that right? Wasn’t the truth always made
by the male voice who spoke it?
The shape of an island on
your palm, red like a fire,
white gauze wrapped around,
like a summer cloud.
It was more of a storm cloud though–
fiery with lightning flying down