For Megan, on the death of her mother


From the first

She washed inside your tight little fists

Found the grime in your sweaty neck


Repeat, repeat, repeat

All the days of our lives

The things they taught us when


(When we had mothers

There was no world

Beyond the sound of her voice

Her touch was home)


They wash us so we are clean

They wash us so we will learn

They wash us so we will wash others


Today you washed her

Washed her clean

Sanctified her flesh


That is why

That is why

That is why

They wash us.

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