Prayer and Other Poems


Lord let me hand you my burden my body it’s yours
what will you do with it
my bones are gone to gravel under weight
I loved her
I loved her body as it
grew broad spilled forward filled in its loosened skin filled in
with newfound weight
we stayed at the bar too late we ate with relish chorizo
syruped with figs
I put my cheek against the fat of her belly it felt
cool I felt light as if I had risen taken
a form yet to be baked
I’d stomached every pill I was asked to take some
filled my gut
with a hunger I couldn’t sate so sick
from other pills I halved
or quartered meals
misplaced one hundred nine pounds of weight
women who barely knew me said you’re so thin so pretty
so lucky you lost a person
it’s so so so so great
she fed my body she loved me as I
grew plump again shed my wrinkled skin slowly like
my breasts so heavy I thought
they’ll burst
my breasts so heavy in her hands
can a body burst I think a body can I’ve known its juice
pills tricked my brain into a motherhood without fruit
I made milk & I burst
I thought what new thing are you body what
are these droplets in my palm
I thought taste it
I thought maybe you’ll remember your mother you must have felt
weightless in her arms she waits
for you to call you hand her your laden days she bears you
she gained baby weight to bear you
she lost weight
her muscles grew slack & weak a woman who knew her well said
you’re wasting away
my mother said
they took you from me in the hospital you didn’t know me you
    wouldn’t feed
it was our very first grief
don’t taste no wait for the real thing the authentic thing I thought
there will be other milks to taste
there will be the sweet fat weight of a child a child
my body then refused to make
it was busy carrying weight
too late too late too late
I ask is this it
is this weightlessness
I am weak in my bones from this weight there is bone
in the milk of my knees O sweet Christ
take half my gut or half my legs or half of what’s left of my life
you’re holding the knife


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