I can taste them in my dreams–sweet and lush. My babies. So close I can feel their breath, smell their topsy-turvy, tantalyzing innocence.
I’m there flesh-to-flesh, and I can’t get enough. The curly, sweat-tangled hair, the pouty, thirsty breath, the squeal that breaks my ear. I can touch it, taste it, fill myself to bursting with squabbling children, children that I pushed away, wished away too many times.
A mother too young to know anything—too tired to cherish the wailing pranks, the grubby hands, the one and only magic of rowdy, squalling childhood. The wonderful, tumbling sweet filth and scrabble of it. I wanted neat and shining and quiet-please. I wanted coloring inside the lines. I wanted mind-your-manners.
But I know better now, and I rewrite history in my dreams. In living, breathing color they come to me again and again, their hard little soft little bodies smeared with grime and wanting, and I can’t get enough.