by Renwick Berchild

It is eleven, and we are the early night.
Daddy hasn’t forgiven our existence yet,
Daddy hasn’t gotten out of the car,
Daddy doesn’t remember how to change a tire,
Daddy doesn’t love us at all;
Mommy won’t come outside into the daylight,
Mommy won’t wander the halls until we sleep,
Mommy doesn’t remember how to drink wine
Without spending the next 24 hours dreaming.
It is eleven, and we are the early darkness.
Pajamas that smell of cigarettes and rum,
Toenail clippings left on the bathroom floor,
The wind is rustling the pines across the field
Where we buried six hamsters and one guinea pig,
Where I kissed a girl then a boy then a girl
Then ran off into the tall trees, singing and hollering.
Mommy throws fits with foot stomps that sound like drums,
Daddy won’t say he’s sorry until the game is done,
Mommy won’t tuck us in, kiss us goodnight,
Daddy won’t remember how to change a tire;
It is one, and we are the early morning.
We count the years, count our nickels and dimes
We collect off the street, say our prayers
And attend church each Sunday, vying for holy favors
But it’s all empty; we don’t trust that god.
We don’t trust anyone taller than us.
The whole world.


6 Comments to “Tall”

  1. There’s a lot of deep emotion in this write that I’m sure many can relate to, nicely done !

  2. A Marie….how depressing!

    Time to give your head a shake
    When you’re down
    And goose feathers
    Stick to your plate
    Take a stern look around you
    For you…
    For heavens sake!

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