On the third floor Joe in the bathroom jerks off
to gay porn. My sister and her partner in bed
warm up. A row house in Philly, three-story
attached, I sit on the first floor with Mom
we make small talk. She wonders why everyone
went to bed so early. I imagine Joe handing
Louise the still warm cup, her with the turkey
baster, how they will maneuver to insert
the sperm at climax, the perfect condition
for insemination, my sister tells me. Still
surprised at her change of heart to carry
a child, this first attempt of many. Mom’s
continual delusion that Jill and Joe will
marry—two lawyers—she only tolerates
Louise. A baby will shift our dying family.
Mom stares at the TV with blank eyes,
arthritic, stranded on the first floor.
I kiss her goodnight, go one flight up,
hang with Joe who’s tired, sitting
with his thoughts about becoming
Originally published in Cliterature
Julene Tripp Weaver is a psychotherapist and writer in Seattle. She has a chapbook and two full size poetry books. Her most recent, truth be bold—Serenading Life & Death in the Age of AIDS, was a finalist for a Lambda Literary Award, and won the Bisexual Book Award. Her work is widely published in journals and anthologies. Find her online at www.julenetrippweaver.com, and on Twitter @trippweavepoet.