Buddha Calm, Dontcha Know
By Patty Tomsky

I'm Buddha calm, dontcha know
when she becomes the Madonna
before our eyes every night. Her
long, dark hair practically cleans the floor.
my mother brushes it out and brushes mine,
cropped short because I cried and struggled
every night under the brush.
Mary, my sister, suffers in silence.

Lemon yellow dresses every Easter time, mine wrinkled
long before 10 am mass. She is out finding flowers for Mama, for Auntie
she looks like a TV child, fresh pressed.
I think I got dog shit on my white frilly socks but I
don't say anything. I tap the front of the pew
until my brother asks what's that smell
my father is glaring down the row of kids at me
everything gleams Easter Day but me.
so that's why I go upstate
to find a place to walk around in white pajamas.

I think my dharma is a mess.
the woman from Schenectady sees
the dog shit on my soul, that isn't white,
snow white, Himalaya white.
they tell me to breathe it out
and I think of the butterfly wing story, wondering
what is this wind my breath makes doing?
when it gets around the world
when the monsoon comes?


A professional writer in corporate hell, with two kids, two dogs, one hubby, two birds, five turtles, and a slew of guppies. Live in Rockaway, NJ.


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