The Last Straw
Muffled giggles come from their room. The boys
should be asleep, but are still playing. I
tip-toe closer, putting my ear to the
door. They chatter, laugh, their faulty volume
control has broken again and they are
loud, no pretense of sleep. I battle, soft
heart warring with maternal concern. I
take a breath, steel myself, open the door.
They don’t notice me at first, keep talking,
then see me standing there. I wait. Silence
thickens. I say, ominously, “This is
the last straw.” Eyes wide, they prepare for tears.
I launch myself at them, tickling them like
only a mother of boys knows how to do.