Arsenic Lobster poetry journal Issue Forty
Spring 2016
 
PSALM TO BE READ WHILE MY DAUGHTER SLEEPS
Nicole Rollender

The nights of my sleep are over: there is music under her eyes: there’s also the taste of shadows, all that came before

her body: also, the sadness of my crooked pelvis: my legs that trembled with the weight of her: now I can’t lie on my

back and hold the weight of a man without crying out: my lungs swelled to carry her: my eyes that stopped reflecting

Roman ruins at dusk: yet there’s gypsy music: our great-great-great grandmother rode horses bareback in Poland: there’s

our long hair: in it vellum, ink, what we write in the margins: someday the hand that wrote this will be no more: she,

an island in the moonlight: how beautiful that she touched the inside of my uterus: floated there, her jawbone, torso,

skin, hand, hand forming: the syncopated music of my nights now: when I consider the angel that guides her breathing:

the scalpel that tore me to let her see the world: if a cardinal bleeds red against winter storm clouds: for the mercy of

all light: all my second chances: her loud body-psalm of need: the only holiness I know.

About Nicole Rollender

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