Reality Skimming
15Dec/12Off

Alison is On the Phone by Lynda Williams

Alison is On the Phone by Lynda Williams

Written Spring 2001

It's not easy having a mother who spends time in another world. Here's a poem I wrote for fun to capture the feeling in the house when my co-author calls, plus a little philosophizing on my part.

  • Oh no, oh no
  • Alison is on the phone.
  • Who will pour milk
  • wash dishes braid hair.
  • Motherhood becalmed
  • and deafened by
  • Oh no, oh no
  • Alison is on the phone.
  • Who will pour milk
  • wash dishes braid hair.
  • Motherhood becalmed
  • and deafened by
  •  
  • another universe
  • that half steals its changeling
  • creator standing between
  • sorting underwear and wiping tables
  • bound by sound and conversation
  • to the one thread unsevered
  •  
  • from childhood with its
  • radiating spider's web
  • of interests bound like flies
  • still struggling, escaped
  • or spoiled in their silk, waiting
  • undevoured
  •  
  • Alien as the chaos that predates creation
  • to the beings that minted my motherhood.
  •  
  • One day they might meet me there. One day
  • if I can cast it all wide on the sky. If it is big enough.
  • At least it's possible. Dreams that die in one brain cast
  • no shadows.
  • If it's there. If they look. They might just catch
  • my resonance.
  •  
  • How many are so privileged to leave a speaking ghost?
  •  
  • But I forgive them now if
  • they are rendered deaf
  • and becalmed in the effort
  • by their own siren creations. And
  • hope they will forgive me if
  • I tug at their sleeves in my
  • old age, all unaware
  • and cry my own rendition of
  •  
  • Oh no, oh no
  • Alison is on the phone.
  •  
  • another universe
  • that half steals its changeling
  • creator standing between
  • sorting underwear and wiping tables
  • bound by sound and conversation
  • to the one thread unsevered
  •  
  • from childhood with its
  • radiating spider's web
  • of interests bound like flies
  • still struggling, escaped
  • or spoiled in their silk, waiting
  • undevoured
  • Alien as the chaos that predates creation
  • to the beings that minted my motherhood.
  •  
  • One day they might meet me there. One day
  • if I can cast it all wide on the sky. If it is big enough.
  • At least it's possible. Dreams that die in one brain cast
  • no shadows.
  • If it's there. If they look. They might just catch
  • my resonance.
  •  
  • How many are so privileged to leave a speaking ghost?
  • But I forgive them now if
  • they are rendered deaf
  • and becalmed in the effort
  • by their own siren creations. And
  • hope they will forgive me if
  • I tug at their sleeves in my
  • old age, all unaware
  • and cry my own rendition of
  •  
  • Oh no, oh no
  • Alison is on the phone.
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