THROUGH THE FIRE: Nisei Mothers, Sansei Daughters; Part 1 & 2

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By traci kato-kiriyama

1.

my mom has a clock hanging
above her head whenever
she meets someone who is
healthy and over 85

I keep reminding her
she’ll make it at least
that far

she never seems to
hear me
or doesn’t have
the time to listen

she just points to the clock
touches the tip of each finger
with her thumb
and spends a lot of
time counting
backward

time seems
to be too proud of itself
moving through life
without pause
and I find myself
starting to hate clocks

2.

The difference between Nisei
and Sansei?

I push the snooze button.

I wonder how early Mom
will be over
so I can drive her to the
luncheon two hours before
it begins.

I sigh.

I go back to sleep.

 

traci writes from nooks, cracks and tabletops in corners all over Los Angeles and wishes all mamas a Magnificent Mother’s Day.

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