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Sweet as Candy: A Novel in Verse

By @Madison


It’s a painful memory, sure

But I try to think about that day as little as possible.


In the here and now

Things are different.

For one thing

It’s not Candace and Mommy anymore

But Candace and Izzy

My mother’s sort-of sister

And my current legal gaurdian.

Now, I’m eleven years and a couple of states away from the scene of the fiasco

With an entirely different woman

As an entirely different girl.

Izzy is not my mother, nor my aunt

But the best kind of inbetween-ish something.

She offers me encouragement when I need it

And makes enough money with her interior decorating career

To offer grocery trips more frequently than on a biweekly basis

Keeping well-rounded meals on her cherry wood table

At least five nights per week.

She pays for my clothes and schoolbooks

Keeps tabs on my report cards

And makes sure that I go to sleep at a decent time on school nights.

Isabelle Noble does everything a mother should do for her child

And yet

I haven’t once let any maternal nickname pass my lips

In reference to her.

Don’t get me wrong

I love Izzy

And Izzy most definitely loves me.


I can’t associate the term I saved for my birth mom with her face.

Maybe it’s side effects of the scars that I continue to hide all these years later

Or simply the difficulty of breaking a habit.

Whatever the case

Izzy is not my mom

So I do not address her as such.

I don’t think it offends her

In fact, she might understand

Because not once in the near twelve years I’ve been in her custody

Has she called me Candy.

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