This poem appears in the Spring 2008 issue of Lullwater Review .
Solitude 2 am
Your leg flings across our son’s stomach,
pinning his thrashing pelvis. I hear
the thump from two rooms away, half
roused in my solo bed, the bed I’ve slept
in alone since he was two, when we learned
he was disabled, not simply a difficult
child. We stopped punishing him, realized
he slept better with your hand on his chest,
didn’t bang his head so violently. Better for you
to wake up with bruises than me, we agreed.
Now I’m not strong enough to hold him
if I tried. He’s seventeen and passion racks
his ungainly body, hormones raging
through unknowing veins. For fifteen years,
you’ve quieted his night rages and I’ve
listened. I lie quiet, but like him, I rage.
I imagine your hands caressing my neck,
your hip bones undulating against my
pelvis, as the murmur of your voice threads
through the walls.