Literary Mama writing about the many faces of motherhood

Juli’s work makes me smile, but I realize the desire for motherhood isn’t always this light-hearted. For some, it’s filled with sadness and loss. For some, there’s quiet acknowledgement and acceptance. For others, there is no desire.

These stories are easy, and they’re fun. Dancing, twirling—Spirit dusts every scene with unicorn sparkles, and Rowan listens with glossy eyes. Spirit makes sense to him because he loves magical thinking—loves the gleaming power of possibility. He still looks at the world with wonder. For him, if something is wrong, if he’s sad or angry or lonely, it seems perfectly reasonable that someone might throw a cupcake at him.

Stash a reasonable amount of nostalgia in a string-topped bag from a resort you once visited: Fuzzy Bee, the turquoise toy with buttons you bought the first time you ventured into Walmart without another adult, a few sleepers, a blue onesie with doggies. Get rid of the rest. Give it all to your best friend who is having twins the same week you’re having your uterus removed.

The first glimpse
of my daughter
showed nothing I’d been dreading—
a carrot-thin, three-toed, faceless thing

but instead confirmed my luck,
my baby’s every bit
perfectly formed.

Beneath all the struggles is that sludge that I rarely touch and almost never acknowledge—grief.

These stories are easy, and they’re fun. Dancing, twirling—Spirit dusts every scene with unicorn sparkles, and Rowan listens with glossy eyes.

I felt like I'd failed as a mother before the baby was even born.

They grew from nothing, nothing at all, in that womb of yours that now must be removed.

When you come from darkness, your bones know it, welcome it.

My mother loved the sun. If you knew anything at all about her, you knew she loved the sun.

This month, we've collected a plethora of books highlighting multiple aspects of motherhood.

I am remembering my own childhood through the repetitions and enactment of parenting.

I turned to the first chapter: "Everybody is talented, original and has something important to say." An invitation. A recognition.

This emptiness is not so heavy, / being vessel, waiting to be filled.

I have been here before, bat in hand, ready to play.

There are only the shore sounds of a water world, / panicked drumbeats of a primitive heart.

I didn’t mourn anyone that day / / but kept looking across that lake / again again again

I opened a door and brought you through, / opened this space between us:

Start in the produce section. / Hold various rounded objects of light / / yet solid weight, a cantaloupe will / do.

Julie Lawson Timmer reveals how she untethered herself from being a "want-to-be" writer and emerged as a published author.

Author Robin Black talks about being a late bloomer, the lure of social media, and the value of abandoned stories.

Nicole Rollender’s debut poetry collection that tackles desire and grief as manifested through the female form.