Today I need to poem for my friend Kely, who gave birth to a brand-spankin’ new baby boy yesterday. Good work, Mama. It’s her second child, and I remember that feeling, vaguely, the one of being so newly-connected and firmly and satisfiedly-attached to the babe but yearning so piercingly for the eldest at the same time. Oh, babies. Makes my phantom womb ache. Goodness gracious. Shall I write I birth poem, then? I shall.

Night New Mama

Gripped down deeper than the holler, deeper than the creek-bank, here are those sweet pains coming down from the shoulder-blades and taking taking root down deep, there, at the bottom of the spine. It’s called a sacrum for a reason, now we all know that, and there the tensing gets bundled up and bursts forth, all squalls and soul and relief in shudders. Behold, the gasping creation, hold him, all slimy and wriggling towards the breast, all squawking and slippery and alive. Here I pray deep for you, mama, I stand pushing behind you and thinking of ducts, I think now on latchings, he will, this angel child, get yourselves all hooked up and hope now, hope and sleep the wakingest sleep now.



Night, night new mama.