My mother wakes up in the mornings, a fleshy
wobbling mother, a bosomly mother, she has
very big brown nipples and little black hairs
stab out from her Samoan calves: they have
never been shaved, but her thighs are tattooed.
A woman once called my mother rotund, and
O! my mother is round, this woman gave her
a recipe for a 7 day soup diet and
then for a week she was skin and bone, but now
she is an O with a figure, and always will be.
My mother lies down and like a lover, I
lift her shirt slowly so as not to startle her,
she is ticklish, and I fondle her stretchmarks,
lifelines that span her belly like a hand
but harder to read, they are silken and jiggly
like tofu, I nuzzle her belly with my entire face,
suffocating in her folds I open my mouth over her
belly button, pressing down with my tongue
I’m a cub again and suck and suck, I eat it all,
I get very fat, I suck until a cord like a
muscle tongue sticks out, I lure it out with my
tongue, and swallow it into my body, and
we get very very hungry.
We eat the frozen placenta we’ve
been saving for a special occasion, our teeth
chatter and we pretend we’re enjoying it
as you shrink and I grow,
shrink and grow,
you become so little I swallow you
like a sugar pill,
you are sweet and do nothing,
I swell and spew
give birth to you,
you come into the world
sweet and shining, a bundle of good
things, a Christmas hamper,
a lolly mixture.
You’re so tired from a long day
birthing, I place you in your cradle, nestle
you into the crook of Dad’s elbow.
He rocks-a-bye baby, a dulcet
hum, winkles a sweet breath
from you, little sigh, you fall
asleep, a dolly mixture with all of
my faves, you sleep sleep sweetly,
Mama, little bag o’ bones.