Poem of the Month
Portrait of a Boy as Mist

By Aidan Chafe

Published on September 4, 2018

A boy awoke to watch the wind blow
his parents’ weathervane relationship,
leaving him in a fog.

I changed channels to see a duplex
drown in the middle of a city.

I once caught father
catching rage,
fists becoming thunder. He flooded
home for weeks.

Mother felt storms grow in her wrists
whenever grandma came over. Felt her
mercury rising, barometer break
as grandma’s tornado swept the kitchen.

To hide from grey skies, I used to drink lighting
from bottles. Inhaled the occasional snow.

They told me a man does not become a hurricane overnight,
so I watched the weather network,
waited for the incoming forecast of my life.

I’ve seen when a home sinks
an entire neighbourhood slips
into high pressure, slowly washing away
as children echo the quietness of clouds.

Others stare through backseat windows
wait for solitude in blue
while parents drive in different cars
to different towns.

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