“Stricken” by Spoon Jackson.
I remember that Sunday morning tune, you snapping snap beans for dinner while rock doves cooed in the Oak trees. I thought you were the strongest person ever. I thought you were an ancient Redwood protected by a loving light from some heaven.
My mother, I knew you would live forever like the goddesses and mothers of Ethiopian, Greek, Roman, Asian, and Indian tales. I thought you were immortal, like love, indestructible by time and pain.
Then I came to prison, even after you told me not to carry that knife that held my faith.
My brother Abe told me tales of how some disease with sugar ruthlessly consumed your body. He told me something called a stroke had stricken you twice and laid you, helpless and bedridden for years. How you could not speak anymore. How the goddess mother, you are had left. How life before everlasting in eternity, is a cruel snake wrapping about the throat.
Heaven must have been that morning on the porch beside my mother as she snapped, snapped beans.
(Sound of a cell door closing.) These commentaries are recorded by Noelle Hanrahan of Prison Radio.