In the midst of my daily agonies—
The ups and downs,
The growing pains of being
21, single, jobless
(despite alcohol, curves, a quarter-million degree)—
I am grateful for the familiarity of home.
Fortunately, I have a mother
(repetitive with her worrying but unconditionally loving),
(infuriatingly immature but siblings all the same),
And an entire Yggdrasil of extended family
(alternating useless and useful but comfortingly there).
If having a family makes me soft
—perhaps still too soft for this city—
Or keeps me miles away from the jaded hearts
That populate this city,
I’d take them over overweight, not-hungry Girls;
Man-boys with twin beds post-college;
People who text and don’t call
(or don’t text at all).
When I come home upset, my mother’s food is there.
When a man dies, his family gathers together.
These are promises I can count on.
Things that we family people will not forget.
My uncle, healthy and young, died on Sunday from an unexpected heart attack. He was a kind, warm man. His daughter starts high school tomorrow. This is for her.