Today's poem is by Arra Lynn Ross


Take an egg from under a hen.
Feel it warm the palm of your hand.
Close your fingers around it,
                                      take it into
your skin, all that warm weight and curve,
the smooth beige flecked with brown.
You can feel the raised freckles and the scent
of earth and hay, manure warming
the shafts of sun inside the dark barn
and the sound of your own quiet breath
and the shifting, the settling of the hens' heated bodies,
the scrape of their claws moving the straw.

Now hold the egg close to a candle
so the light comes through.
See the dappled pores,
the scarlet branchings, the shadowed eye
of a body, the spider pulse. Pulse.
In the nest of your wrist and throat.
In the ear of the dark heart and belly.
                                                And silence.
Slip the egg back beneath the hen's heat.
Feel her feathers,
her shifting and re-settling, your breath.
The tongue in your mouth.
If, when the light shines, there is no body,
bring the egg back to the house.

These are small things for young minds
and are of great importance to me.
Never throw away the least crumb
of that which is prepared for you to eat
because you do not love it.

Copyright © 2010 Arra Lynn Ross All rights reserved
from Seedlip and Sweet Apple
Milkweed Editions
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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