Sitting on a step-stool, I look up at my mother & spell
a-b-a-n-d-o-n, in my six-year-old stupor, as I learned
it at Jesus Time, where I set nearest the white lady teacher
& imagine her taking me home. Are adopt & abandon
the same thing?

Like any curious animal, I am trying to find the wound
my body belongs to. What her first-born names her,
a mother becomes. I call mine a shame
since every hurt child looks to place blame.