What am I afraid of anymore?
It’s not the big things like cancer or death or falling from an airplane or sharks–
It’s more like the way my kidneys will squirm and my lungs implode when I tell her my torch bears her name–that I am her Champion–and she disappears on me. Again. Or closes up her hesitant, fragile shutters and hangs a No Vacancy sign around her eyebrows. I am afraid of my teenage son jumping from the deck of my unmoorable boat and floundering to calmer waters–I am afraid he will hate me someday. I am afraid of the phone call that will say my mother is yellow and bloated, that the drink finally devoured her, and I won’t know whether to feel relieved or devastated by her release, and I will remember that I never got to know her favorite color. Or tell her mine.