Last night we were driving home.
Driving through a storm, fat raindrops battering the windscreen, they seemed to dance to the pulse of thick grey clouds that rolled across a navy blue sky, flattened by the swish swash of the windscreen wipers, back and forth, back and forth, my father navigating the windswept roads, my sister riding upfront playing with the radio, twisting knobs, changing stations.
I lay in the backseat, my head on her lap, her hand cupping my hip, she stared ahead not even realizing that her silent grip was a source of comfort, a mother and a child, made innocent again by the backseat of the car, by a raging storm, by 10pm darkness, by rainfall, by shelter, by gentle touch.
Everything is cyclical.
An innocent bystander might never know the absences that existed within this relationship, the lineations of loss engraved into my skin, the longing that burned in my chest, calling out for someone who never returned home.
Her fingernails tickled my skin, the long fingernails she’s kept since my childhood, her hands creased, soft and delicately wrinkled, beaded bracelets dangled from slender wrists.
Mother, you are my home.