Giving

Night thumped the window pane

when he was born

and they put him into my arms,

a bullet into a chamber.

They had dipped him in copper first,

wrapped him in a steel blanket,

then gave him to me and waited.

He looked up at me for the first time,

with a chin like mine,

a dimple on his right cheek,

the light candling his face.

His mass pushed my abdomen inward,

as I let him curl at my belly

for the last time, coiled

into the springs of my arms.

Silence tumbled around me,

perching on empty shelves

in the hospital room,

opening the quiet for us.

No one brought petunias.

The nurse stood in the doorway

checking her wristwatch.

I grasped the cold rail of the bed,

my arms withdrawn like elastic.

They wheeled him away

while I lay on my side,

feeling something like the moon

as it greened the sky.

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