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Kristen Yawitz – Litany

Kristen Yawitz


Litany

when my father met her list of dinner options with what I would LIKE is not to have to
make any decisions when her father met her hugs with unsuccessfully stifled flinches
when my sister and I met her at the carport door not to carry but to rifle her grocery sacks
clamoring for good cereal prizes when Dad made himself a martini and a mean drunk
when we walked over her freshly vacuumed carpet ate her chicken without noticing when
my stepfather took the keys to her new Lexus from her hand and drove recklessly veering
when we ran late when we raised our voices when we saddled her with the task of
recalling other times we’d behaved this way because apparently we had forgotten when
she was heading for law school when she got pregnant despite taking the pill so be
warned when she would’ve left my father in those first years if she could have but there
was my sister when she wore those same few cardigans ten years in a row with no new
clothes so we were welcome to them when she waited while I clowned around instead of
concentrating on the quiz questions she was spending her evening helping me to prepare
for and for the last time it was Gargantua and Pantagruel

There are sins of com-mission and sins of o-mission Mom recites as she mixes bread
crumbs into raw egg inside a square glass pan to crust her meatloaf

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