Tom Holmes is the editor of Redactions: Poetry & Poetics and the author of three full-length collections of poetry, most recently The Cave (winner of The Bitter Oleander Press Library of Poetry Book Award for 2013), as well as four chapbooks. His writings about wine, poetry book reviews, and poetry can be found at his blog, The Line Break. Find him on Twitter: @TheLineBreak.

Tom Holmes

Imagined Scenario 22 of My Birthmother

When you were the age I was collecting powder-soft, curled-up bees and hornets from the windowsill, and throwing flaming cattails at my friends, and climbing out my window at 2 a.m. to lay traps for early birds, and lighting firecrackers and nearly burning down my school, you were telling an uncle no and no and no, and he was telling the police no, and the police told you no, and you said to no to a hanger, and entered Buffalo State Hospital, and when you had me, they asked do you know the father? you said no, and they asked do you want it? and you said no and no and no.

This poem, "Imagined Scenario 22 of My Birthmother," is part of a larger series of poems about my birth parents, whom I've never met, as well as my adopted self. Most of the poems in the currently titled manuscript The Book of Incurable Dreams tend towards surrealism. This one, however, is not, though the experience for this imagined mother probably was surreal, as well as horrifying.

Glass: A Journal of Poetry is published monthly by Glass Poetry Press.
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