Birth Story

“Subliminal Inherent Compound Habitation” by Chris Boyko

In the hospital, the nurses think
my blood thickens too easy, inside
it clots like pomegranate seeds,
when they hook me up to the IV,
it falls out, clogs the line—jewels—
Thin me out.
they force my womb to contract.
Imagine a fist, a lens tightening:
the Pitocin, a bit of smoke
in a wide cave. Hello, little girl,
come into the light, out
of the thicket, of the thickness,
of me. Learn how to eat, to
suck the marrow, to use
my body as another kind of house,
the ducts in my breast, tiny rooms
full of sunlight. Draw it all out. I want
to make your first gown
from this thickness, to cover
you, skin to skin, to be
the mother I always wanted, someone
not so aware
of bleeding.

By Sara Moore Wagner