Literary Mama writing about the many faces of motherhood
Polemic

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Today my body does not want to write poetry.
It wants to scrape every rind of intestine,
stomach, those old wrung-out towels the kidneys –
blindly, for these eyes of mine are no good

at seeing what's inside, that's why man created
ultrasounds – because of a couple fat glasses,
Red Label Johnny Walker has sprung my system
into a search and seizure, a lost parking validation

and us at the gate: my body pulls at its pocket seams
and picks at fuzz; junks the white toast and water
I dutifully ate this morning, including the multivitamin
with extra vitamin D the midwife suggested

since repeated tests show I'm low – finally my body
and I in accord after years of chemical warfare
and guerrilla tactics on both sides – but my desire
to its availability now reversed: my eggs are too busy

washing their hair to come downstairs for some fool
who knows better than to drink a spirit's level of whiskey,
even as I circle yesterday's date in a bright red 0 –
no, it doesn't want to write poetry today,

so I make a show of patting down my seat, rattle maps
and manuals, engine idling and both of us thinking
I probably left the ticket with its timestamp
at a restaurant somewhere in my twenties.


Kelly Morse is the author of the award-winning chapbook Heavy Light (Two of Cups Press 2016). Her creative work appears in Gulf Coast, Mid-American Review, The Cincinnati Review, The Journal, Tinderbox Poetry Journal, and elsewhere. Kelly holds an MFA from Boston University and has been awarded residencies and grants from the Vermont Studio Center, Kimmel Harding Nelson Center for the Arts, Mineral School, and the Sustainable Arts Foundation. She teaches at Old Dominion University and is exploring Viriginia’s beaches with her two toddlers and partner.


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This is a harsh and beautiful poem. Thank you for sharing it.
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