Simeon Berry

I don’t know why these women

trust Mom

Her bone rosary

and ever present murmur

Holy Pater   Father of etcetera

pray for us now

at the hour

of our death

She’s someone to whom

the worst has already happened

Even though it was


She’s got a hand

for the trimester sweat

on their brows

For the breech birth

and the umbilical noose

Sometimes she takes

my chin

Fingers my jaw like a blade

Says Oh yes

You too will be there

Stretched out

Wretched as a frog

With a pin in your spine

My own little grenade

After the movie

After the vanilla shake

sluggish as concrete

And the taste of them

Their virgin salt

I think of the martyrs

How Miss Raylene goes on

about the science applied to them

How they got to be in gold books


wrapped in crimson threads

with those wide sleepy eyes

that see nothing

about the author