Articles/Essays – Volume 55, No. 1

Mothersong

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Let us amass

our wandering kicks, wondering in awe at these
costumes her womb hath made. O Mother
of the sacred hearts, sing your peasant lullabies

before our every sleep. Ring like waves against
sand-swept ears. Hark, the angels weep
Her ocean’s cradle & She drinks their briny tears

to feed our hearts, the lungs, the liver, the teeth
of us. Our tongues stretch forth for honey
dropped like gems from powdered buds beneath

bees’ feet. We are atoned for this matter, for
our Mother & her earthy star. We each appear
& hover above our swaddling, alive and silver—

O blessed human Mothers—in tender kindness
& hope for joy. Chime, you quiet bells. Open
lapping mouths and let us laugh your milk of life.

O thou

good and faithful servant of Earth-flesh, to whom
is born this morning,
its birds pealing birth of dawn. Hear

the compensate call of renewal & answer
calling us by name. O thou blessed mother,
who lie in wait & will be delivered

when her days are accomplished on the
hour we last scream in this world. The third
day cometh. We are dressed in the deaths

of forbears, silken and glowing,
a placid transgression of light. See the trees
in our fingers, blades of grass beneath

moons of every toe. Count their numbers
in quiet amaze: ten for good works, another

creeping in good paths.