I missed out on feelingmother-103311_640
your handprints, sticky with doughnut frosting,
on my face, on the face of my days.

I missed out on being your personal dragon
slayer, the guard at your childhood door,
the one who saw, and did something.

Sometimes I go back,
and I’m at the kitchen window,
and you come spilling out of the school bus.

You walk in smelling of sagebrush and sneakers,
full of your day. I feed you warm cookies
and all the listening you could ask for.

If I’d been a better mother,
I wouldn’t make the bed
of grief every day.

If I’d been a better mother,
I would have pulled that dragon out
of your little pink book bag,

and my mouth, suddenly a blowtorch of rage,
would have incinerated him into a smoking wheelbarrow
of ashes before you even knew he was there.

If I’d been a better mother, you
would know the rightness of anyone loving you.
Or at least you would have slept, and slept well.




Tina LearTina Lear grew up in a Learjet. Her grandfather, Ole Olsen, was a world famous Vaudeville comedian and a prankster extraordinaire. Her brother is one of this country’s top experts in UFOs.  Her children are artists and musicians and restaurateurs. She’s been writing out of that textured life ever since she could put together a decent sentence.  She’s a published composer/lyricist for musical theatre; but, it’s her private yoga teaching practice that nourishes her most. It has given her a more profound appreciation for life, great food, bad weather, art, mean people, crappy days, and absolutely everything else. She lives on Long Island (NY) with her wife, Elena, and her dog, Tash. Check her out at www.tinalear.com.

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