Today is May 16, 2014. I am alive and well and a bit sad.

Mother’s Day has moved on like a semi, all gears engaged leaving a truck stop. The soup at the cafe was good, but not good enough to keep her off the road for another three hours, when her hunger returns.

My mother lost her hunger to a coffee cup filled with vodka. There was no Easter Egg hunt the year she died. No hanging lights to entice St. Nick to come down the chimney. Hell, the Fourth of July didn’t even get a flag waving from her crumbled hand. I don’t remember the year she died, but I do know it was bleak. She was only 58-years-old.

I was not prepared for my mother to die; there’s knots in my long black hair that conditioner will not get out. Only a rough combing will help. It hurts. Mother loved brushing my hair. I loved that time with her, alone, doing something ultimately feminine. Her hands were smooth then with polished nails, a deep blue red, and the whiff of berry coming from lotion.

How best is it to remember my mother? Her life was tragic. King Alcohol stole her socks. Her beauty, although still hanging on like a spider to its web in rain, was being washed away. Her inner light was being shut down and I didn’t know it. Her liver was failing. 

That’s what happened, her liver failed her. She fell into a coma and didn’t wake up. All this time later, years, I still feel the brush in my hair, her hand in my hair. Is it too late to light a candle for her? An unscented candle? One that she could have lit her cigarette by?

Mother’s Day is heavy feet on a stairwell. Mother’s Day is a sheet knotted on the bed. Mother’s Day is a day of remembrance–mother on her horse, her hair loose in the wind, nothing any louder than hooves on packed dirt. I loved her. I loved her.

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