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.  

Saint Anne, 

Mary’s mother,

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. 

In rain, 

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.