Today's poem is by Muriel Nelson
Ma (Or Pa)ternal
To know, I thought, you have to make a child.
Take dirt, hot air, a stew, and a mix-up, then
a nightmare when it worms out of body, turns, and worms in.
You take it to heart. But you could adopt instead
most anythinggodchild, oyster, Hoover, leach
call it dear and admire. The sweet whoever-it-is'll
grasp, suck fast. Congratulations. You're
attached (as if you'd wombed a thing or whom). You'll lug
your little fancy to death, then forever pick up after it
old tales. Goodness, how it flew before you
could ease its way (some motherfathertaker
of cares! Stir yourself) into thickening air, plotted with 'ternities. Stir.
Copyright © 2005 Muriel Nelson All rights reserved
from Northwest Review
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission
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