POETRYREPAIRS 11.02: 020
Mama Land by LYN LIFSHIN
Mother's Birthday Cake
The Way You Know
POETRYREPAIRS v 11.02: 020
contemporary international poetry - for your reading pleasure,
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All the fine arts are species of poetry--Samuel Taylor Coleridge





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LYN LIFSHIN
Mother's Birthday Cake

like the earth, my
mother had no memory
of cakes. The way
disaster leaves no sign,
ferns covering
lava, the outline of
graves, a 9 year old
camouflaged, my mother
forgot any hint of a crumb
of a cake, refused to
believe she had one.
She may never have for
gotten the woman who
stole her knife or how my
sister tried to intervene.
But to my mother,
her birthday cakes
didn't exist, were as
absent as she imagined
any flaws were in me
		
         
2.

"I've never had a birthday
cake hone," she shook
her head the 6th year in a
row I've ordered a chocolate
one. My mother, who could
remember which man I dated
was circumcised, if my
period was late, insists, 
"no, never a birthday cake."
Those longed for cakes, 
lovers there could never
be enough to fill her		
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Poetry endangers the established order  of the soul - Plato





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The Way You Know
suddenly something is very changed. It's like that snow smell in the air. You've noticed it, haven't you? And know the way it sends you tumbling to decades ago. Smell is the one sense that can't be censored. But sometimes just a word in an e mail, the slightest dry brush of lips lays the whole scenario out. One shrug of the shoulders of the man my mother loved, one I may have a Yiddisher name but that doesn't mean I'm not goyim and my mother knew, as I do, tho we go on living quietly
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