Welcome to the March/April issue of Literary Mama!
I am spatched flat, / leeched and rasped / by the shape life now / will never take.
She is a wisp / of skin over hollow bones, / a ribcage like harp strings / holding her wild-beating heart, / scapulae jutting like vestigial wings, / fingers and toes long as claws / she still doesn’t quite fit.
But listen to me, going on. / It’s just that / the less you understand, / the more I want to tell you, / before you’re all gone.
Teach her what to do when she loses you. / Don’t say Heaven. You don’t believe it, / neither will she. Say anything but sleep.
You believe in fairies / and leprechauns. / You believe birds / can fly to space.
The Hard Tomorrow, a stunningly detailed black-and-white graphic novel, ponders over the “readiness” for parenthood. The answer is a complicated blend of politics and naïve belief, but it emerges in a display of hope and audacious motherhood.
Ann E. Wallace’s debut collection of poems,Counting by Sevens, is, at first glance, about the wounds we all bear as humans. Some of these wounds are borne publicly, such as the collective trauma brought on by cultural tragedy. Other hurts—those stemming from illness or personal tragedy—are endured more privately.
My mother didn’t meet the son I named Daniel until she was 72. She was living in the nursing home in Maine, and Jeff, 23, was visiting from California for her birthday party. In her room, as I watched them together at last, these beloved bookends of my physical life, I marveled at their matching sea-blue eyes and freckles.
The double-helix structure of DNA allows for replication, but yours has unwound, a single spiral staircase tapering off into a singular void. Rick refuses to uncouple, says having a genetic double is half as important as having you. You double your resolve: you’ll try and try.