“Mama,” says the voice
In my empty home
A question not to answer
A memory from the hall
Says the voice
In the backseat of the car
Insistent and quiet
Mistakable as a mew
If cats ride in the back
I’m not to engage
I look at the beautiful sky
And its clowns and panthers and conductors
And say, I’m not playing with clouds today
The clouds are clouds again
The voice is still the voice
But I don’t play with her either.


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