Literary Mama writing about the many faces of motherhood
Twin Birth

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At four years old, the two creatures
who once swam like fish inside me—

bobbing and swaying in the ocean
of their amniotic sacs—want to play

baby. “Please Mama, let us go in your
shirt.” I lift an old T-shirt, and one

squeezes inside, shifting his head
beside my bare breast while the other

pushes him to the side before entering
by stretching the fabric to a deformed

shape. Under my shirt, we are three
heartbeats again—triplet sound effect.

They nuzzle and coo to me, to each other,
before they say, “Mama, say you never

think we’ll come out.” I rub the bulge
of a made-up belly, “Oh, I don’t think

these boys will ever come out.” They
begin to practice their birth: a passage

never taken considering the doctor pulled
them out of an incision, saying, “All arms

and legs.” The first slips out of my shirt
as if falling down a slide. Safely grounded,

he looks at me with calf eyes, round and
brown. The other slides out, finds

his brother, and cuddles him. They sit up,
murmur, “Mama,” before they crawl away.


Dana Salvador’s work has been featured in the North American Review, Fourth Genre, Water~Stone Review, Cold Mountain Review, Red Rock Review, and North Dakota Quarterly, among others. Additionally, she is the recipient of a Vogelstein Foundation Grant. She lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico with her husband and twin sons.


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