First Night

First Night
The house is quiet.
All three of you, oblivious, sleep soundly in
your beds.
You trust me to keep you safe. Happy.
All by myself.
The house is dark.
Only one light remains in the kitchen. A white
candle lit.
You must assume I am normal. Steady Mommy.
I dig for courage.
The house is yours.
The back yard anticipates time with you
again tomorrow.
Your breakfast will be ready when you wake. Laundry clean.
I’ll get up early.
The house is huge.
Our first night on our own together in these
big rooms.
You don’t notice that I am different. Breakable.
Somehow smaller.
The house is alive.
Sixteen years of memories, silently, and loudly
swirl within.
You will fight to remember. Hold tightly.
I will hope to forget.