I remember the first time I ever dry swallowed pills. I was 10 and we were in a rest stop overlooking green grass
And the Pacific rushed in my ears
With the sound of my gagging and dad's derision
The bitter aspirin melted pn my warm tongue and
Still my mouth can shape the sound acetylsalicylic acid
We learned from a story on the tape we were listening to I remember I wet the bed the first night back in California
At home it wasn't a problem; Mom had taught us
To wash our own sheets, and at home I carried Infant siblings on my hip and cooked by myself And knew how to write in cursive. I remember my favorite tree in the orchard where I ran
To hold banquets for the faeries and my doll
Acorn hats for cups and crabapples for dessert and I taught the others to carve our initials in the eucalyptus along our fence And to bite and suck the stems of grape leaves for
The sour taste I didn't know was tannin
I remember how we all held our breaths after the divorce For many years we did not understand we were safe At last, and free to live.
We held our breaths until we became a vaccuum. I remember a swing in a yard with too many kids
Swarming over our old cable spool like goats, and stretching
Out my arms to spin and if there was only a strong wind
I know I could have flown.