Content warning: This article describes sexual assault, graphic depictions of abortion, and violence, which may be disturbing and/or triggering for some readers.
I see God manspreading now,
Laughing at the storks with baskets dangling from their jaw
Like hawks with limp rabbits.
On the top floor of the library,
In the silent spot—
My mom and her high school friends
All pitched in for a girl’s abortion.
Hands like the lines of a star,
Overlapping to put pressure on the bloat.
What’s “Plan B”?
There are only two answers to that question, right?
“It’s killing a life.”
I don’t think that’s what my grandmother
Thinks she means—
It’s killing part of the self
And the closest evidence
Of the soul,
The most needed relationship
To call us Children of God,
Children of the Earth.
Looking at the beach through fogged–up glasses,
More and more each night
The prints on the full moon
Look like a fetus in a womb
Rounding out for a bigger appetite
As she eats for two.
Water broke over the sand.
We know how much the mist can hold—
That is to say,
We need to know the ocean’s capacity
More than our own.
Bloody parasites on my thighs,
My mother’s palms on my tailbone,
Sponging out the lunar light.
“The Virgin and Child,”
Is the oxymoron they remember
Medieval masterpieces by.
Some mystics believe that
When Mary last held
the blood–spouting and all–ribs Christ,
He became an infant again.
They say a parent should never have to die
After their children,
But no one mentioned if it was both at once.
More and more each night,
I know Mary was raped by the Holy Spirit.
Sculpted like a twisted rag.
Women in passive voice,
Not only forced to carry,
But to raise it into a stone tablet of Commandments.
A mother’s whisper is like black smoke
That puts out the Devil’s energy.
They refurbished her body into Hell
And kept it awake at night
With the cautionary tale of a Nun:
Holding her burning baby
Up to her chest
Trying to feed it to fall asleep.
An accident she reversed to redness—
Blood like liquid gas,
That the atmosphere of the first circle
Made flames out of.
Is a crumpled piece of paper
That you can’t make smooth again—
No matter how many books you pile on to flatten it.
So why did the Nun try to pray anyway?
Mary is sharpening the point
Of the crescent moon like a hanger.
The uterus the shape of a cross,
Ovaries like two nails hammered against her pelvis,
Left to just wait it out,
But never resurrected.
Our single Mother baptizes the church courtyard,
Hoping fingertips wash
In the curtain of beaded drops.
As the white marble turns pink,
With nowhere to go—
She is spotting again.