All children, except one, grow up.

by Amy Turn Sharp



I am not feeling well she would say and

her breath would intake sharply and she

would hold her arm tightly to her side

 

She said the pain was like monsters.

 

Let’s take xanax and watch Steel Magnolias instead chick?


and her laugh was lusty

and some days were like that

and some days were just easier than others and

in the warm glow of the medication meant for my cancer stricken friend

I would look for peace

 

And I wouldn't take her leather satchel.

She tried to give it to me, suggesting that one day

I would be a writer and need to put important papers somewhere professional.

She said that I would grow up and I just smiled like a dare.

 

People try and give you things right before they die

little words

trinkets

things that have weight

feather lies

tender buttons

a solid heft

magic secrets

 

I like to remember it that way towards the end.

I like to remember how I was there for her during all of that lucidity.

I like to forget how I left her when it was painful like monsters for me.

I would say that she didn’t know I was there.

I would say that her real friends were all around her.

The ones that were of her age and responsible.

I would say that I was in the way.

 

I would say so many things to keep my mind from telling my arm

to reach out and grab a sharp kitchen knife.

I would plug my ears and sing "The Flintstones" theme song

so I wouldn't stab out my own heart.