“What time is it?”
“What time is that?”
“Time to go to bed.”
“It’s not dark.”
“That’s beside the point. You go to bed when I tell you.”
“I’m your mother. That’s enough back talk.”
“What’s back talk?”
“When I say jump you jump. Now I say ‘Go to bed’ and you go to bed. Go.”
She made no sense.
I lay in my bed awhile seething at her autocracy and her unwillingness to explain anything. Then I went to sleep.
Sometimes, writing these one-word prompts. I find myself instantly associating a word with childhood. That’s an interesting phenomenon. Bedtime? Only an important issue to me as a child attempting to make sense of what came out of my mother’s mouth.