She has always knelt at the foot of her bed
at sunrise and prayed to God,
and she says she always will. She pops her knuckles,
says amen, and descends the stairs for pancakes
and orange juice. Her father says over his coffee,
“Good morning, my lovely, little miss.”
She can’t conceive of ever having to miss
this routine, sunshine on the flower bed
beneath the window and the smell of coffee.
With a syrup-filled mouth, she talks to God
and thanks him for mornings and pancakes
and fathers with their cracking knuckles.
She learns to sleep in, and the scars on her knuckles
remind her of every meal she forgets to miss.
The toilet accepts her offering of pancakes
and orange juice. A man yells from the bed,
“Are you finished yet? God,
I need to piss. Go make some coffee.”
She offers him a trembling cup…
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