Literary Mama writing about the many faces of motherhood
On a Failed Second Adoption

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I am spatched flat,
leeched and rasped
by the shape life now
will never take.

My eyes slit, shift,
only to root my spot:

the children's toys
the empty chair
the man descending the spiral stair
the French doors opening to other rooms
the garden beyond in silent bloom.


It is late afternoon.
Through wooden slats
the honey sun
coats the walls,
enrobes me
lying here.
Pansies unshield their faces,
reveal their finch-bright hearts.
Grace alights.


My mind's eye flares
with pain's paired prize.
What remains can still be glorified:

a glowing room
a growing child
a steady man
an opened hand.

Patrice Boyer Claeys grew up among the plain-spoken Pennsylvania Dutch. She graduated from the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Manchester, U.K. After years in publishing and PR, Patrice completed a Certificate in Poetry from the Writer’s Studio of the University of Chicago and published her first full-length collection, Lovely Daughter of the Shattering (Kelsay Books, 2019). Her work has appeared in Open: Journal of Arts and Letters, Bird’s Thumb, Found Poetry Review, Mom Egg Review, Clementine Unbound, SWIMM, Crack the Spine, and After Hours, among others, and is forthcoming in Aeolian Harp Anthology 5 and Pirene‚Äôs Fountain. She was nominated for Best of the Net.

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