Our First Night Home

 

                                       —after Ralph Angel

 

You wake me

in the middle of the night, and you
are hungry. You are ravenous.

The moon is moving again. The tremors
in your sides and stomach are small fountains

against my hands. A storm

is passing through: the windows
rattling, the pounding

of water, a tree falling.
I wonder if the world could cave in.

I wonder how much you would understand:

a newborn, your vision stalling
at the halfway mark. Half of a storm,

the tree falling halfway, leaning there,
half of a bed

of flattened flowers, leftover from the summer.

Your stomach fills. You are quieting
into my shoulder, small coos. I am lost

in the beauty of your small hand
around my smallest finger. Your feet

arching, legs stretched.

Others have asked how it feels
to be a mother, what it’s like

to hold you, to have you here now,
and I say—I say

what could be more beautiful than a dusting of crows

in a field and a brown paper bag
flickering down

a nearby road. Your face is here,
is there, in the distance.

 

 

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