If I Could’ve Looked Into the Future

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If I could go back to my pre-teen years, 
I would be less of a pest to my mom.
I’d show her the love and affection she yearned for
and show her the gratitude she so deserved.

If I could take back all those feelings
that caused my dear mother much grief,
I’d exchange them for lilies instead
and give her a hug every day.

If I could tell Mother one thing,
it’d be that I always did love her
but didn’t know how to show it,
even when my heart screamed to do so. 

If I could’ve seen into the future
and had seen roles reversed 
with my daughter and me,
I’d have made things better with mom.

If I had learned as a child
that stories would repeat in years to come,
I’d practiced patience and love with my mom,
so then I could apply the same with my daughter.

If I could’ve learned from my Mother
to keep calm when things became tough,
I’d not be putting myself through hell
and dragging my daughter along.

If I could use gentler words with my own daughter,
and still let her see how much I love her,
and that her happiness is what I fight for,
then we’d be able to communicate better.

If I could tell my daughter I love her,
oh, but I do, although tearfully.
Still, the words don’t come out 
like they should, and, damn, that hurts!
First published in Silver Birch Press “If I” Series Poetry/Prose (September-October 2016).

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