parents' fight from decades ago
when they were fighting always
and always passive-aggressively
my father sounding patient
my mother sounding smart
neither of them listening to each other...
from our room: my sister and I listened,
grading them--not on how right or wrong
they were, but how not mean they were.
our mother lost our ratings
for our father lost the fights
afterwards, he wouldn't talk to her for days...
every time she happened to be in the room,
he'd be whistling or humming something
to show how he didn't care and didn't hurt--
like at all--not even a little bit