Something Pretty Should Come After
My mother sprayed lavender and chamomile on my pillows.
I pretended to nap and tried not to listen.
I swung into dragon-shaped clouds against the too-blue sky.
Don’t be so hard on yourself. Hush.
Memory swirls like the rainbow of threads in a sewing kit.
Patience. I’m undoing these tangles, unknotting the mess;
a picture emerges of a black-haired boy on the blanket in the grass,
my father’s child who sat near me in my yellow plastic swing.
Needle meets fingertip, a rose teardrop; he calls my mother a bitch,
I never see him again, and I don’t think it hurt.
My therapist tells me to imagine a place of peace.
I see the ocean, how it stretches one way—
and then endlessly, the other—
Heather Myers is from Altoona, Pennsylvania, where she received a BA in English at Penn State Altoona. She is currently pursuing an MFA at West Virginia University where she was the 2016 Hungry Poets Winner. Her work has recently appeared in Up the Staircase Quarterly. You can find her on twitter @isitthesea.