In the Fresh

In the Fresh poem by Desmond. Poems Unrequited blog.

In the fresh afternoon
I wish it could all begin
rather than this straggle
To the wounded end

I’d go back
To the start of the kisses
To the first firelight
And I’d shoot myself then
Rather than have come to
This again

The fucking pain
The fucking pain
You once more
At home insane

Written February 28, 1996

This poem quickly followed the previous one “Her Smile.” Reflecting on the timeline, it’s likely that my mother had been committed to an institution for a brief period of time – usually a couple of days – to assess the level of her insanity. After this period, she would typically return back home to continue her decline into madness until she could be admitted for a longer period of time to a mental institution. The whole process was pretty horrifying on a lot of levels. The waiting and waiting as the family (mainly, my father and I), would keep close watch on Mommy’s behavior, which was never violent, but certainly erratic and frightening as a child. I wanted her to go away to get better, and yet I was terrified of what would happen to her in the mental institution– in fact, the idea still frightens me.

I’ll give my dad credit for committing to his vows for as long as he did (granted, not for the entirety of my siblings’ childhoods), remaining by the side of his wife and children through the countless breakdowns. Even in moments like this when he regretted ever meeting my mother, he didn’t abandon her.

About Desmond and Poems Unrequited.

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