I hear the fear in my mother’s click of her—identified “evangelical”—tongue
on the other side—distance
not great enough to feel her “I’m so disappointed” thoughts. Can I disappear,
dodge my father’s ongoing questions, wonderings (“for your good”)?
I feel the “crowd of witnesses”, the ranks of parents, their concern a conversation
to persuade, save.
I see and empathize with all they think, believe, feel with all the earnestness accompanied
by hand gestures of capitalized italic sounds. They are
daughters and sons—babies still really—“into the kingdom”
away “from the roads that lead to hell”. As much
as they know, learned, believed with all the intensity thrown
from the driver’s seat to my corner far far far
far in the back right where I watch red and yellow
blink and refract in the rain, wishing the neon lights of PDX to appear.
D LARISSA PETERS
grew up in Indonesia and has been somewhat of a nomad. After meandering around the East Coast for more than 10 years, she moved to California—in the middle of a pandemic. Her most recent poems have appeared in Makarelle, Flora Fiction, Samjoko Magazine and has a few forthcoming pieces.