Volume 20, Number 3

My Mother’s Names for Me

My mother calls me Hush.

She calls me
Do Not Move.

She does not need to call me
Lights Off
since the switch no longer
turns on the lights

or Get The Water
Go To The Store
since there is no water
since the store is empty.

she calls me,
planes are coming.

Under The Bed
she calls, as if
she did not know

the planes have eyes
to see me hushed

beneath the bed.

—Susanna Lang