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LEE JUNG


 

Hand

You are bad. You should go to bed. 

I take your hand in mine like your mother used to do. The exact way your mother used
to grasp your hand when you were bad and you had to go to your room. The grasp that
told you she loved you, just not right now, not while you were bad. 
I take your hand in mine like your mother used to do and I lead you slowly up the stairs. 
I take your hand and I grasp it. 
I am like your mother, now. 
I am like your mother, your hand in mine, leading you up the stairs. Slow. 
I lead you up the stairs and into your room. Pull back the covers and you crawl in.
You are crying now. 
You are crying now, the way you used to cry when your mother grasped your hand
when you were bad and you had to go to your room. 
You are crying silently. I am being quiet because you are being silent. You are in your
bed and you curl yourself into a ball like a wadded tissue. I turn the lights out. I leave
you alone. 

I won’t come and get you later like your mother used to do. 
I won’t come and get you the exact way your mother used to come and get you, after
you were bad and you had to go to your room. Instead you will come down the stairs,
still silent. 
I will be sitting, still quiet because you are still silent. 
I will be sitting and I will be reading or I will be writing. You will come down the stairs and
sit down by me and I will take your hand in mine. Not like your mother used to do. I will
take your hand in mine the exact way only I can take only your hand in only mine. We
will sit, quietly and silently, neither of us like your mother in any way. Not anymore. I am
not your mother. 


 

Lee Jung reads and writes in Winnipeg. They peddle Half a Grapefruit Magazine and host a weekly folk radio show. They are nobody’s mother and the law can’t touch them at all.