Lineage


My grandmother the model did not suffer

       the supernatural, or God, or pianos

       or all bourgeois things,


but the blood in the glass was enough

       to stop her from having the abortion.

       Instead she kept the fetus, a little worm


inside her. Less terrifying she told me

       over steak tartar. The Line Cook & I

       want travel but that night my brain unpacked


its lobes like a suitcase (or a stroller)

       because what would it be like to hold 1 small us

       in my hands?


My mother renounces: the drinking, depression,

       your father—the whole trip—except for you girls.

       A woman is whole only when she’s


with child. A woman pumps a watermelon

       out the width of a coin. A woman is whole

       only when she leans forward. It is selfish


to not have a child. It is selfish to have.

       I am selfish. We he she are selfish.

       The Line Cook takes beef pink as white infants,


sears it, both sides. We never travel,

       I want to tell him. My body’s a ghost ship,

       a red moon, a blood glass. Our shelter, a torn


tent, a white flag, a time-blind

       dissolving, the whole empty

       night sky.

Copyright © 1999-2017 Juked