Literary Mama writing about the many faces of motherhood
January Respite

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His standing barefoot on my doorstep
on a ten-degree day in the middle
of a Kansas winter is what made me forget
boundaries or calling cops, therapists,

or social workers and opt instead
to give up the couch to my otherwise
homeless son. I gave him food
too, and cash for shoes

which I could have just handed to the
nearest drug dealer, and there were
plenty around Southbrook apartments
those days. I couldn't afford
to get out, he couldn't get straight,
but for that night I could pretend

this was a temporary rough patch,
that when he walked out
the next morning—
as we'd agreed he would—

it would not be to the bridge in North Topeka
but to the steady monotony of a job,
a house and a car, a wife and some mundane
hobby I abhorred, like model cars
or fantasy football.


Lisa Hase-Jackson‘s first collection of poems, Flint and Fire, was chosen by Jericho Brown for the 2018 Hilary Tham Collection series and will be published by Word Works in Spring, 2019. In addition to facilitating the Poetry Society of South Carolina’s Writers’ Group, Lisa is editor of Zingara Poetry Review. She lives in Charleston, South Carolina where she is working on her second collection of poems and a memoir.


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Chilling. Thank you for your poem Lisa.
This is really chilling, and fantastic. I was just reading thru a few poems and it stopped me in my tracks. Well done.
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