Literary Mama writing about the many faces of motherhood
Matrioshka Dolls

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Matrioshka halves scatter on the table
Mama's missing bodies
Baba's missing heads
pieces of baby
that won't fit together
born of their splitting frames.
rolling under sofas and chairs,
lost, or broken underfoot.

My youngest sits there playing
fitting Mama's head to baby's body
but nothing fits in right
mama's missing mama
and baba's missing kids
baba's broken bodies
and mama's mixed up heads
all the mismatched pieces
won't a little family make

My baby keeps on playing
arranging on a tray
mama's, baba's and baby's bottoms
in a tea set --
discarding all the heads.


Odarka Polanskyj Stockert is a native New Jersey poet, and an active member and president of South Mountain Poets. A long-time collaborator of the Yara Arts Group based at La Mama in New York City, she has performed in many Yara poetry and experimental theater events and productions. She is a harpist, engineer, and inventor, and lives in Millburn with her husband and daughters. Her poems have been published in the journal Lunatic Chameleon, Gathered on the Mountain (South Mountain Poets, 2006), and A Walk Through My Garden (Outrider Press).


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