Seven Again

Turn seven again. Hold the slab of malachite your mother stole quietly from the Goodwill in your little hands. Try not to let loud voices inside you. Think brick wall. Think windbreaker. Try to make your blood cool. Press the stone against your temple (there’s no way this won’t work). Learn to leave the room without drawing attention to yourself. Learn to leave the room without leaving the room. Think open window. Think space hatch. Press the stone against your mouth. Say: I wish I could have been there when the pressure formed you. You want to understand everything, even if it is only a stone, and only a little bit beautiful. Leave the room when your mother tells you Shh, when she slips rings bent from spoons onto long fingers, turns her head all the way around to look at you. You remember that dream where she had two heads (you couldn’t make them look). She says something about how genetics don’t mean anything, but the mind makes itself sick when you’re old. We can’t know what will happen. Think will of God. Think dormant volcano. Nobody in the Goodwill turns to look, to notice the sewing machine, unpaid for, cradled sweetly in her arms, like the child you were.

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