Produce (from July 26 edition)

Saturday, July 28, 2012

The girl in my womb cries wolf

through ten days of false labor.

Overfilling her space, I realize

this is only her first rebellion.

Already she measures me,

and feeds on my spirit from her tendril.

My grandmother fed generations

from a root cellar,

stone stacked on stone

and dug in deep,

even the morning air kept to midday.

Wooden planks sagged under

her sacrifice of vegetables,

tightly packed in brine,

and berries sealed in paraffin.

I want for my daughter

to make a self-preserving place.

I shore the ceiling, sweep the floor

and turn over the planks to correct any warp.

Overhead on a shelf,

protected inside a spider's house,

I save a blown robin's egg,

a broken porcelain doll,

mussel shell buttons

and a cardinal's wing.

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