April 27th poem

Thursday, April 27, 2017

What It Is: Notes Toward Something Real

I wanted to write something real, but
I couldn’t remember the name of my goat
friend. The goat had had a rough birth,
leaned against my hip
in a muddy field in Vermont. 
I was newly pregnant, shiny and baffled. 
It will be ok, little goat mother,
us mothers said to each other
through our bodies. 

In my notes from writing group, Margaret's comment 
women’s bodies as failed performance of a cultural ideal

I was thinking about being pregnant in New York—
All that first trimester dizzy on the subway stairs, a descent,
uncertain destination.  Hormone fog, muddy mind.  Tadpole in mud.

 (I was really very dizzy and had no job.  I was
back together with my boyfriend.  I was
hot in the summer and had to only eat the right
amount of food, not too much and not too
little.  What am I doing. What mystery am I.) 

All through this haze, up to the quickening the glow
the metamorphosis the tearing the shit and fluids and
meeting another human so gloriously himself and
also a space and time traveler I could tell all through it,
but especially that first summer, the thought recurred: 
I would not require this of another woman, I would not
ask her to go through with this if she could not.

I’ve been wanting to record the dream I had that Charles Bronson electrified a crowd at a protest by singing a spiritual.  He looked completely different than I remembered, tall and lanky with a lean face like the red-haired Irish priest in the show about demons.  This Charles Bronson was flamboyantly gay, but my mind is thinking buoyant.  I realize then rigid machismo will crack open and make way.  That there is much else to electrify us.  Spaces to make for one another.  

What is it?  What?  What?
Making tea, my mind searches around
For what is different.  Then, a click:
Oh, I’m not in the young woman’s game
anymore.  I no longer require the approval
of others.  I step toward the kettle, just
as a metal colander falls from a stack
of dishes in the drying rack.  My thought
having jostled it.  Reach out
and catch it with one hand. 

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