It makes me stretch and change shapes. My arms can be the swings he can sit on and play for hours. I can be the parachute he can use to slow down his fall when flying, the rubber boat he climbs up to, when he feels he’s drowning.
It allows me to see through the darkness. When he’s sick and scared and he looks for my eyes, I make sure they shine with a very bright light. I become a beacon. Fixed in place and centered, I don’t leave or stop glowing, because I know that if I do, he may get lost and I with him.
My super-power pulverizes anger faster than an atomic bomb, anger that, like an old faded sweatshirt that doesn’t fit anymore, has been stored in one closet of my heart for so long it has become another part of myself, like my flesh, my hair, and my bones.
It crushes stress into dust better than a M4 Sherman tank, the stress of having to juggle cooking, cleaning, teaching, grading papers, and a burdening desire to be perfect in everything I do that bends my back and shrinks my lungs till I can’t move.
My sweet boy makes me strong, powerful, invincible. Mother Love is my armor, my shield, and my sword.
Mari-Carmen Marin was born in Málaga, Spain, but moved to Houston, TX, in 2003, where she has found her second home. She is a professor of English at Lone Star College—Tomball, and enjoys dancing, drawing, reading, and writing poetry in her spare time. Writing poetry is her comfy chair in front of a fireplace on a stormy winter day. Her work has appeared in several places, including, Wordriver Literary Review, Scarlet Leaf Review, Dash Literary Journal, Months to Years, The Awakening Review, Lucky Jefferson, American Writers Review, and Willowdown Books.