Judith’s Last Song~ by Veronica Haunani Fitzhugh
Judith’s Last Song
“My Ma’s dead.”
He waits to hear more.
“She’s a vet. And, they gave me her–”
And, all of a sudden I am there. I am sitting in the folding chair borrowed from the V.A. in my borrowed, ill-fitting suit smelling of trash bags. Every time someone squeezed me in a hug a waft of Hefty would make me want to itch and throw up.
The chaplain kneels, tells me the flag is on behalf of a grateful nation, and holds up the red and white triangle for me to take.
I just want to punch the flag out of his hand and run away.
Just run till I get to a place where my Ma is alive frying Spam and eggs with too much soy sauce.
Just run till the pain moves from my heart to my lungs.
Instead, I just sit there, and he places her on my lap.
© 2014 Veronica Haunani Fitzhugh
Bio: Veronica is an author, activist and good friend keeping busy saving the world and sipping sweet tea on her front porch in Charlottesville, Virginia. She holds a BA in English from the University of Virginia. There, she won a Jefferson Cup for her story telling. She is a certified storyteller for nami’s In Our Own Voices project. She founded Peer Review, a literary and art magazine for the Charlottesville recovery community. Her work has appeared in Piker Press Magazine, Gadfly, Best New Poems, and the women’s initiative’s Challenge into Change 2013 anthology.