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Baby Loss Awareness Week 2019



TWELVE WEEKS

by Melanie Wright


golden shovel after James Wright


The words after gone were left unheard. Suddenly

I went from with to without, from expecting to I

don’t know, what—unexpecting? How can I realize

this leaving when you never yet arrived, holding that

whispered might-have-been alongside bitter what-if-

I-had-only? These things happen for a reason they said, and I

should know there is no fault. Just fault lines to be stepped

across, between mother and not, the tasks of crossing out

the numbered weeks penciled on the calendar, of

telling who I must. Strange how my belly still curved, my

breasts twinged, the daylong quease carried on, as if my body

hopefilled to the last, believed it no more than I.

My less than little one, I would have flown to the moon, would

have crawled there if crawling could have brought you home. Break

open hope, dilate and gently scrape, suction what’s leftover into

lines on discharge papers. Good to go. Goodbye, my blossom.



first published in Rattle, No. 55, Spring 2017

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