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Mom, the Void

by Lisa Marie Brodsky

You stepped out of the space you inhabited and left emptiness. Perhaps not emptiness because there were casualties, anything having to do with death, the thousands on the Titanic, grave markers from Terezin, fallen soldiers from ‘Nam, a 16 year old girl before the overdose, when she’s counting out the talking white tablets, voices flying like bats through her head. Some Natives believe bats in a house foretell the death of a loved one. I saw bats in the eaves, watching with their mournful eyes and I tasted the itchy mosquitoes on their breath.

So perhaps a Void does not have to meant emptiness and perhaps emptiness does not have to mean a lack of something because I had my men to fill me up with pretty words and pretty promises. They had to step over the dead they did not even see, they had to duck from the bats flying kamikaze, and yet they only saw me.

When you died, you left emptiness in the pocket of the Void and I’ve been trying to fill that hunger ever since. Before going to bed, I turn 13 years old and fantasize dancing with him, looking into his eyes and seeing years talking back to me. I didn’t even know him; all I knew was the attention: it felt good to come home to his emails and not climb into bed crying over my missing you.

I’m tired of living this lie, replacing you with him, inviting him into the Void that houses old whispers and deadly murmurings. No one knows what they’re getting into and I dig out of the garbage day after day making room for the hope of being loved on a snowy day, on November 6th, 2006, or maybe as far back as when the tumors first appeared. If I could have been loved before maybe this wouldn’t hurt as much.

So maybe Voids aren’t empty of feeling, maybe they’re void of living people and that’s what I’m grasping for. Someone to fill me up with life so much that the sting, no, the puncture of you, doesn’t do so much damage. But it’s the impossible. I got emotionally raped instead. I trust too fast, too easy, I look at the good in people and let that lead me around by the shirt collar. Mom, you believed in the best of humanity; I just wanted to be like you when I grew up.

01/18/2007

Posted on 01/19/2007
Copyright © 2020 Lisa Marie Brodsky

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