mad mommy

my fiery breath burns at the eyes of my sons
calls out the tears sprung down their cheeks
sends them huddling at my ankles
stabbing guilt into my soul,
yet never managing to puncture
the supreme sense of irritation
to which i feel so righteously entitled

i declare myself an unfit mother,
call friends to bitterly announce the fact,
then impatiently proclaim that without children
i’d be bored and more miserable
stuck yet again in some corporate workplace
with no one’s face to tape to the walls of my cubicle

i prefer, oddly, to emerge as hydra
when fresh urine has soaked my carpet
or hot soup decorated my walls,
with moments of calm in the storm and the pressure of necessity
severing the fork-tongued head lashing out
only for another to spring in its place
when the winds change
when the preeminently imperfect me
spirals out of control,
revealing my own horrifying humanity.

unbearable cute and giggles
try hard and fail
at the permanent amputation of the evil in me.
my heart breaks at my flaws,
but my brain fosters partial appreciation of the villain,
if only to model the grace of apology and acceptance
and the importance of knowing one’s limits.

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