"Lullaby for My Mother" by Jennifer Bradpiece
Lullaby for My Mother
My love was priest to my dying mother.
When he said: Grace and compassion.
When she confessed to finally courting silence.
When she said: Sleep.
When the television was blank and quiet.
When the lights were gratefully dimmed.
When the tree rats stampeded outside on the deck,
our vessel — sinking, sinking.
When we entered a celibate haze
of anesthetic “remember.”
When he said: You are brave.
When one-thousand cigarette butts
corked the gaps.
When the dog curled up on the sofa and sighed.
When she said: Help me . . .
When we barely coaxed the last blue
morphine communion down her dry throat.
When she said: No more pain.
When it rippled her softly back through time's keyhole.
When he said: Jane, We are grateful.
When the dog gingerly sniffed the bed,
bowed his head, and backed away.
Jennifer Bradpiece was born and raised in the multifaceted muse, Los Angeles, where she still resides. She remains active in the Los Angeles writing and art scene. Jennifer has interned at Beyond Baroque and often collaborates with multi-media artists on projects. Her poetry has been published in various anthologies, journals, and online zines, including Redactions, Mush Mum, and Common Ground Review. She has poetry forthcoming in The Ekphrastic Review, Stimulus Respond, and Bacopa Literary Review among others. In 2016, Jennifer's manuscript, Lullabies for End Times, was acknowledged as one of the final ten favorites in the Paper Nautilus Debut Series Chapbook Contest.
Photo Credit: Brittany Antenorcruz