Three Mothers

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That day, two people died.
No she was alone in the car.
(Thank God for that, some said)
But a tiny life vaporized
Far, far away.
Sniffles, tears, mourns, sighs,
Man in the hall
Baby in the bedroom.
The maid rocks and strokes,
The baby knows better.
“Oh, she’s dead! The love of my life!
Twenty years I have loved her! Twenty!”

A week later, she moved in.
Prettier than the first, the baby thought.
Reds, pinks, oranges flutter about
A touch of lipstick, a dab of rouge
We have a party to attend, after all,
(There’s always a party)
And you’re not invited!
Wails go unheeded
Feminine tantrums pampered.
Diapers everywhere
What’s the maid for, after all?
All alone at night?
You know I’m scared of the dark.
What happened to the occasional cuddles?
The tickles, the giggles, the tucking in?
A separate room?
(What’s that?)
Whims are adored,
Milk bottles ignored
(It was only an inch away)
The maid’s here overtime
At least she smiles
I thought he liked me…
I could be wrong.
He seems happier
But I miss the first smiles,
The first park totters
The first family videos-the laughs, the love
I want to be a part,
The toys are cute,
They’re still not you.

Arguments erupt,
Fights pick up,
He screams, she screams,
There’s banging and clanging.
There’s more fluttering-scarves, skirts, photo-frames,
A swish of black, a begging follower
The door slams
Cries, screams, pleadings
(No! No! Don’t go!)

He bursts in
(It’s nice to see him again)
It’s all because of you!
You won’t stop crying, wailing.
Why don’t you shut up?
See what you’ve done!
Now another’s gone.
Guilty hugs, fake apologies ensue,
Reminiscences of old.
(Where were you all this time?)

The maid was early
(The baby glad)
But she stood perplexed in the hall
Don’t leave me, too!
She blushes and tugs at her plait
Man smiles
She trots into my room
And my six month old hazels
Beheld my third mother.

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