Mother, Father

I am planted like seeds in the heavy-lidded brown dirt, moist, farther from the surface than you scratch. Scattered in plots connected: water, worry, sunlight, songs earwormed since the opening of the wound and my coming from it, never letting it scab.

Picking constantly—digging. Watching the blood so that it can’t use the magic of flowers closing in the dark—only unseen. As many ways as there are to say so, speech molds from itself. Too quickly for us to tell the difference, to remember what was said in the first place.

Those buried beneath the manicured greens and polished marble aren’t boxed out of conversation, but allow it to perpetuate. Earth Mother eating interred mother and grandmother, father, grandfather. So you don’t have to. Why not be thankful? Why not drink the streams off leaves? Lay yourself down quietly, humbly, in its jaw; ragged blades bedding you for use by your own.

            —by Kristina Webster Shue

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