My Name is Marlou

by Marlou Newkirk

I lay a newborn in my Mother’s arms
She whispered into my tiny shell like ear
There are three things
That will determine your life
If I had had the strength in my tiny fist
I would have reached up and punched her

First, I will name you Marlou
After your Scot granny Martha and
Your German granny Louisa
An attempt at reconciliation
As she did not get along with either
A futile effort as we rarely saw them
Have had to spell my name every day of my life

Second, You will become an actress and
Fulfill my fantasy of being one

Third, I will make you into my image
You will Look like me, Talk like me, Think like me
Double cruel

She loved me I know that
But the demands were great
Have compassion now
But not then

My Father came to us clinically depressed
He struggled valiantly to support us
He would erupt––Terrifying

They lay together in a cemetery under one
In peace, as they never ever were in life
They whisper into the wind and I hear it
We are waiting for you
We are waiting for you

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