Mud Lingers

If you sense this piece has a different vibe, that’s because it does. It’s inspired by my mother who survived a flood when she was a young girl, amongst other things. Even though she inspired this verse, I think it really says a lot more about me.

Mud Lingers

The flood that happened years ago
is creeping memory’s stairs.
Trapped on the second floor,
I practice holding my breath
’cause I’m not going anywhere.

Rooftop says it’s raining on,
the rising river smells.
Father takes his belt off,
gouges a fresh hole
to tie me to the rails.

Landslides tore the valley,
gutted hill and holler.
Now when it pours
insecurity swirls;
I’m frightened of high waters.

The faucet’s icy spray
drenches my wrinkled fingers.
The rain is gone;
the past is drowned,
but the mud lingers.

© 2022 | K.Hartless

28 comments

    • Yes, I remember the stories of the flood and this photo in a book of my mother biting her nails on a rooftop, which has always stayed with me, even once removed from it. Thank you for this thoughtful and punny response. Much appreciated and needed.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. My mother lost both parents and a sister in a flood shortly after I was born (I’m almost 72). She still had freakouts whenever the weather got wild, right up until she passed.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This beautiful write reminds me of trauma that persists inside of our deep programming, and how this trauma is passed down, knowingly and unknowingly, by those most influential to us during our childhood. A hauntingly powerful write, K.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I appreciate your comments. Yes, I remember reading this book about the flood many times as a little girl and the picture of my mother in it. Haunting truly. Thank you.

      Like

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