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Fair enough, Mom got cancer. I’m nine, but dates of procreation were not my doing. Dates where I grow up too fast, also not my doing. But the laundry is too heavy, cleaning too tall, nights too dark. Hospital hallways hold hope in off-white walls. Off-color purity for coming nuptials with God. Chemo smells of bleach and dead birds. Dad jokes about breasts. Jokes I shouldn’t get, but I’m nine, and mom got cancer. Grandpa says mom will be fine. Grandma asks why she’s so fat. Radiation doesn’t answer. So, fair enough, I’m nine, Mom has cancer, the laundry is done, the house is clean, breasts are gone, and the nights are still too dark.