Mother
By: Vijayaraj Mahendraraj

Mother

The dreadful chill of winter's morn, a putrid reminder of fates forlorn,
Browsing, perusing an eternity long, seeking the restoration I had sworn,
Curse the perpetual perpetrator, of which I now abhor.
Time be that icy instigator – time forevermore!
Tenebrous ticks 'fore the calamitous chime,
Dousing wicks as she fades from her prime.

Under roof and rubble, I did pore,
Over contraptions and elixirs galore,
Of science and truth, I once adored,
Her beating heart crippling my core,

Hollow howls of hellhounds erupt from the Hadean heath,
Reminiscence of existence beyond life as a pessimist,
Yet, paralytic prognostications predicting a poisoned wreath,
Morphs selfless scientist into obsessive occultist,

Conjuring clouds of catastrophe amidst mists of mystery,
In hopes for some deliverance from this unending misery.

A ponderous feat of brewing it was, each potion in a vial,
She tried them all, sip by sip, to appease her child in denial,
Yet now she laid stricken with fever, crippled and blinder than ever,
A fragile soul awaiting departure with an offspring that chanted "Never!"

When the limbic and mettle faltered, the alembic and lute were rejected,
The incantations held the remedy, but "What was this devilry?"
Each ritual more macabre than prior, utterly awful they seemed,
From wax, to bone, blood, and briar, utterly crucial they deemed.

Hesitation gripped this scarred soul, terror not far behind,
Runes and verses, foreign and old, etched crudely line by line,
Her ragged breaths and choked coughs waylaid my consternation,
As I traversed into the circle of blood, that occult machination.

Upon the stammered recitations in tongues now forgotten,
Shadows and confabulations, grew ever more brazen,
Discerned did I at times, the whispers from that gloom,
A voiceless, nameless horror that hearkened to my room.

Wails of warnings from corners unseen, to forego this dream absurd,
I heeded them not, their words obscene, for my mother could still be heard.

With vial in hand, now pulsing grand,
I knew this to be her cure,
Soon she would stand, then glimpse the land,
And know her son was pure.

As I rose in trepidation, blinding moonlight pierced the walls,
As I staggered in confusion, howling cries filled the halls,
All my hours and my days had been spent in meaningful toil,
And fruition was so close – so close, it came to a boil.

Loud were her ragged breaths, akin to raspy knocks,
Akin to raspy knocks, that I set upon her door,
Sliding around the crack, like a worm around rocks,
I inched closer and closer, towards death's door.

Flailing and in misery, the drink was to her lips,
No more some mere elixir, a holy tincture within,
Raving and blistery, she began a string of yips,
Then, silence! Utter silence. Ended, seemed the din.

I wished that were the bitter end, a tale of sorrow on the moor,
But pleas and bargains for one to mend, leads to so much more,
As I shook and cried at my sorrowful plight, I heard the ominous sound,
Not a nameless voice or a wailing whisper, it was mother, and she was proud.

I looked down in a blur, ready to embrace and kiss her,
Alas when I truly glimpsed her, no longer was she, my mother.

I felt my body crumble as I landed upon the snow,
Glass and blood, my company, when struck by the terrifying blow,
Tendril-like appendages wrapped about my crooked legs,
Wrenching her son closer while she wailed about her hunger,
An ungodly curse it was, it mattered not my screams or begs,
For I saved her! I saved her—my mother, dear mother.

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