“Dear Mother”

You were a doorway I crawled through,
But I wouldn’t call you ‘Mother,’ no.
Every shackle dragged me back to you.
Your chains weighed me down, kept me low.
With metal teeth and metal claws,
You ripped me apart, exposed my flaws.

Oh I know why you sliced into me
With cutting words and gutting sarcasm.
You never meant to set me free.
You slid within this bleeding chasm
To hide inside a life you couldn’t fake.
My life, dear Mother, wasn’t yours to take.

You were a woman, loud and broken
Screaming for the world to hear her worth
You handed Charon some small token
And sailed upon the boat ride of my birth.
Whatever it was in life that wrecked you,
Know, dear Mother, I’ll never respect you.

I was the one who pulled myself through,
Crawling across your splintered floor.
I separated the me from the you.
I birthed myself while you waged war
On the daughter you were meant to praise,
On the daughter you were meant to raise.

And you raised me all right: you razed me to the ground.
But I endured, dear Mother, every hell
Beat into me, pound for pound.
But I got out and I’m doing quite well.
And though one day, I may forgive you,
It’s only because I learned to outlive you.

Author’s Note: Yeah, I’ve got mommy issues. In one of my writing groups, we had a challenge to write a Mother’s Day poem. I didn’t want to spoil anyone’s mood but obviously this had to be said.