Thirty-Four years ago today. Mother also died that night. Not her body or mind but her spirit and her beauty. It was late. The phone rang. I heard Mother scream. I ran down the stairs followed by the other four and found Mother on the floor weeping. The phone cord dangling beside her. I was so young and had never seen Mother in this condition. All five of us just laid on the floor holding Mother not knowing what had happened. But we all knew it was something bad. Very bad. It seemed at the time that we laid on the floor with Mother for hours. It was really only a few minutes before Auntie Lusinda & Auntie Lucetta came rushing thru the back door and joined us on the floor. The police had called them. Auntie Lusinda slowly helped Mother off the floor and out the back door into her Pontiac. Auntie Lucetta stayed with the five of us. I still to this day remember that Mother could barely walk. This would be the last time I would see Mother. The Mother I had always known.
The next morning when Mother returned home her hair had grayed and her face had wrinkled. Over night. It was Mother that told us that Father had died. Grand Ma Ma & Grand Pa Pa had been with us all night but had told us nothing. I ran to Grand Ma Ma. I recognized her. Mother I didn't. I cried and cried into Grand Ma Ma's arms until finally Mother pulled me into hers. This WAS Mother. I knew her smell her voice her breath her touch. I didn't know this face, this hair, this woman. I wept into the smell of Mothers breath and into her soft whispers and her gentle touch. I wept even more when I looked into this strangers face. Father was dead and Mother was not Mother. I felt as if they had both died that night. For the most part I was right. Mother never fully recovered. Father had died. Robbed and murdered while closing up one of his liquor stores. The police never found the two men that were seen running away. Mother had been robbed that night also. Robbed of her beauty her lover her partner her husband her life.
Thirty-four years ago today. Father died and it murdered Mother.