Sondy Squirrel

March Madness


The 9th.

First i found him down

by the trash cans

near the gate

on the west side



Made a leap frog formation

of the tall city refuse bins

and he wobbled

to the porch

and crawled

past the


Something seemed broken.

He moaned.

He never showed pain

Never complained.

This time he groaned.


He drank too much

to gain the courage

to yell at God

in the sky





The 14th.

We had dinner.

There was no way

his blood sugar could plummet.

He’d forgotten

he had done his

evening insulin twice.

I found him

hugging a pillow


by the front door

as if he wants

to leave

and address God

in person…

rocking as in distress.

Eyes wild and face contorted

He barely uttering

“I’m waiting.  I’m waiting,”


I grew tired of this vigil

of waiting too

when i

wouldn’t be ready

or awake or alert

I’m yelling to the heavens


“Not yet!!”


The 22nd.

I’d read the crap

From the 2 ER visits already…

“Performed complete physical.”



The 22nd.

Our third trip to the ER.

Me waiting and warming up

my car while the EMTs worked to stabilize him

In “the bus”.

A greyhound

To what lies After?

Couldn’t weep.

Just prayed they’d send him this time to the VA to live Damnit.

Long enough to

Dry Out.


2 days later

I said


He hasn’t signed an advanced directive or DNR,

neither will I.


And a wound

and PICC line

in the intensive care unit

keep him alive longer.


And a nephew comes in and gets Power of Medical


Have at it

I’m harried from March

like a

Madd Hatter who’s

avoiding this

date with death.

Vietnam set some internal


in him.


4 months plus

in Topeka VA

Mental Health.

He’s gone home

to a new address.


I’m not allowed to save him


The VA social worker said,

“He’s tired.”


Of his wife grabbing him from

The Grim Reaper.


I won’t be celebrating






After my son died in my arms

I was unemployable and divorce was a bonus to death.


I got a job in a topless strip joint to pay my bills.

My family was appalled.

I didn’t care.

Dad said I won’t disown you no matter what you do.’

My Johnson County Mom did and big sis followed suit.


Okay sometimes I did wear my entire birthday suit and danced off homemade costumes why not?

Exploitation?  No way.  I took home wads of cash a day from any lonely sucker or knowing mother fucker i grew fond of and well that goes both ways.

Off I-70 you get ‘em all.  Truckers salesmen drug peddlers with jars of white crosses.

I had no kids nor habit to support and

Pulled double shifts to cover a no-show for a $3 line of meth.


One day a Jack Henry suit walked in and paid his $10 to watch and didn’t go in the porn room.  It was slow before afternoon.

I danced just for him.

He was creepy.

But i sat with him, robed up a cigarette for self defense between us and he scribbled a note.

“Can i have some pussy hairs to put under my pillow for $50 bucks?”


I answered ‘Sure”, like it was asked every day and hurried to the dressing room to consult with Iris…my ‘mentor’.

She grabbed her toenail scissors from her makeup case snipped a bit of curly headed hair off my head wrapped it in a tissue and pushed me back into the arena.


Never saw him again.

I spent it on nice lipsticks.




I’m not a single mother


I knew

when he turned thirty.


Now it’s my turn and I’m

preparing a path

with Purpose.

And plans.


Never had time to grieve the gone.

So now’s the time



Not an option it seems.


I think I’ll grow old if i don’t

fill in the holes

with dirt and tears.

What grows in salty soil?

A beach where

I dreamed dad said goodbye

before setting sail.

And Jack made a heart

in his ashes the



random scatter it was noon

before at

Wonder Lake.


There’s something

Never quite finished

Bout suicides.


And my first son just died an unnatural death.


I was busy with work and 2 year-old whining about potty training.

Fearsome Fours.


Then kindergarten and how fragile

First grade.

Soccer practice



Can’t tear up with water.

What would Jake do.

He was already delicate of spirit

An old soul.


Jr High is like high school


Kept condoms in a basket.

Had the talk about…

“Sure son virginity until marriage is certainly an idea.”


Then there was Kristy

And the faux pregnancy scare on April Fools Day.


But his friends passed bongs

in this Mom’s home.

No juvey hall

Or trips to the court house.

No young women were allowed.


Then a car at 16.

Finally finishing at KU.

And he took on a near impossible career choice

with only training on the job.


He called home a lot.

Needed explaining.

Suicidal ideation

IS really scary son.

Let’s figure this out.

Call a doc and call me back.

“I did Mom.  I feel better already.”

And we talked for two or more hours a lot.

Until he turned 30.


And he’s teeming with joy.

Shaina did that too.

We trained him to smile and laugh

at little stuff.


Seems it’s time for a few tears now.







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