A Theory of Relativity Print
Written by Lynn Coye   

At birth the baby knows

Her mother as herself

A bond without identity.

Nursed on depression,

Cradled in insecurity,

Caressed by neglect,

She smells the perfume of resentment

Feels the kiss of accidental birth.

Through the maternal gaze,

She beholds their inner world:

A landscape of despair

Mountains of fury

Pools of bilious criticism.


You took me by the hand, mama

Lead me down the path

Of black-and-white should and shouldn’ts.

In times of uncertainty, taught me to pray

To a God who punished my every mis-step

Made me to stand on my own

As retribution for my childlike neediness

Nurtured my cancerous self-doubt,

Helped me excise friendships

And then upon your death collapsed

The black hole of a mother’s love

A Theory of Relativity


Lynn Coye


San Jose, CA, USA