Dear Mammy

Today was the day I would look so proud to you Mammy. My principal will call me up on that stage, in his big blue uniform smiling, and all the people will look tiny down from where I stand, and they will look up at me and listen to me speak. They will listen and want to hear me because of what I have done. And I will know you are somewhere out there listening to everything, seeing everything. Maybe then you’ll realize I am more then you thought I was.

However a child tries to grow and forget, memories burned in the brain like the searing of hot iron on left buttocks of a bull, keep coming up again and again. With my boyfriend caught myself yelling at him, not knowing where it came from and heat in cheeks, and remember. Countless times you pouring yourself burning whiskey and set it on a table next to you while pouring the news into your brain. I’d walk a little too hasty and spill the little cup all over the carpet. And you’d jump up and say, “What the fuck do you think you’re doing?” And I’d back away and say, “Sorry, sorry, I’m so sorry.” And you’d stalk off and get a towel and some cleaner rubbing it away, back and forth, your muscles showing as you’d grind the towel into the carpet. And when I failed class, you’d prowl the outside of my dark room before poking your head in, your fur sleek and shimmering before the pounce, eyes glowing, seeing everything. I would try to be asleep as fast as possible so somehow I’d miss it. It never mattered. “Your a useless no good taker is all you are.” you say in bitter low tones. But it was only the beginning within five minutes it was a scream, your claws scratching and tearing in. You’d yell til you’d tire out and I lay still, play dead, closing my eyes tight waiting for it to end but it cut more deep then I could believe and I’d just try to hang tight like the last leaf on a tree in a wind storm, hanging hanging and then snap. Once I am sure some part of my body flew up one night and floated away forever. A happy part, the part that plays and skips, the part that other kids have when they play in the courtyard, free and unthinking.

But today is a day of triumph. When you see me up there, successful, strong. I get an award and the principal will introduce me. People will clap as I walk up that stage. Hundreds of people clapping appreciatively. And I will talk, and it don’t really matter if what I speak is that good, cause when I get there, it is there. And as I flash a winning smile large, so large a smile I never smiled before. No one would even know I had teeth that big. It will be a smile so full of treachery to know that you, dear mammy will see me up there, and I will be up there practically shouting in your face how dead wrong you were about me.



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