everything looks and smells like death!

son of a bitch
that everything looks and smells like death!

the edge of the yard
the window blinds
the soft pillows
the elementary school
the large grapes
the slippery bathtub
the second story patio
the 10-year-old car
the new crosswalk
the neighbor’s trampoline
the animals at the zoo

they all just carry different versions
of a hundred different ways
my children could die.

it’s fucking exhausting
to fight mortality all day long.

when i was pregnant with my first son
my mom told me
the safest little Charlie would ever be
was in my womb

she was trying to be comforting.

but i haven’t run the numbers.
i have had enough of statistics —

a low probability has still dealt me death.

even without my calculator
i’m aware what the numbers mean

so i chose a hybrid existence–
with one foot tentatively in this world
and the other
planted uncomfortably in the next.

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