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Image by Süleyman Coskun

Six Years After

Ovaries, lymph nodes, uterus, omentum— 

each womanectomy plunged me 

under water beneath stitched-up skin.

 

What’s left of me, still here on the shore, 

breathing. Old waves of cancer sparkle, 

stained-glass earth under my feet.

 

I am goddess with belly as empty as a ghost,

giving birth to fresh bundles of sentences 

on the pregnant silence of the page —

 

sacred cargo I pull out of my throat, 

cradle and rock into the world 

to tell the underground story of me.

 

A religion, this bellowing of my light.

I blow it into musty corners,

gather gold from scarred crevices,

 

watch it color my world.

Published in Exponent II Magazine, 2023

Poetry

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