Literary Mama writing about the many faces of motherhood
Being Pregnant

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When you tell me that you're pregnant,
don't expect me to do cartwheels
praise to God for your good fortune
jump for joy in jubilation
writing sonatas on the wall.
When you tell me he can walk now
don't expect me to unravel
screaming tidings to the temple
touching the floor he treads on
taking notes of every step
in awe or disbelief.
When you tell me he can talk now
don't expect me to create a parade
with the words that have formed
from the lips that slipped out flowing
unknowing of the sadness
sinking deep inside me.

Shelly Nation has been writing and performing poetry in Chicago for nearly twenty years. She occasionally hosts for Wordslingers, a poetry radio show out of Loyola University, and has had poems published in the online poetry magazine why vandalism? and Chicago’s Hammers magazine (no longer in print). Shelly writes, “I have been teaching for sixteen years for the Chicago Public School system. In 1995, my doctor put me on Cytoxin to control my Lupus, ending in my inability to have children. Throughout these past few years, I have dealt with this sadness through my writing and the joys I have experienced with my students. Teaching has allowed me the opportunity to mother and embrace other people’s children. For that, I am eternally grateful.”

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