Melancholy Hyperbole

Poetry about longing.

Annotated Bibliography

Daughter. (I heard your first words in your mother’s) downcast
Silence, womb-wrapped in shawl on couch pillows, her
Face glowing with a muted film’s pale hues: worried
Jaw set against the unwatched screen, not looking
Me directly in the eye, questions and answers dis-
Connected in some essential way between us; even
Reaching for the quiet flesh near the womb, reaching for
You, we are far away from touch, you and I.

Son. (I was told you may suffer an aggressive childhood) malady
Called miscarriage, a 20 percent chance 100 percent of you
Will leak from your yolked core: from the core of your mother, how
Rain slips from the eaves into the reddish mud, caked solid
In sediment by the waiting summer sun; summer, that is
What the ER doctor told us your season would be with July
Due date, the 21st is what he said, though without smile
Warning us that if a blood test wasn’t passed, we would

Have a different conversation, (that’s how he said it), as easy as shifting
Tone, subject, the way our forebears might punctuate policy
Talk about refugees of war: a possible threat of violence, they
Say of sheltering the starved, and shake their empty pates and have a
Different conversation, and though you are not a refugee of war
You are a victim of bald violence, vaginal bleeding ripe tissue
A bad sign from a cold country we’ve never seen but I’ll read you
A poem to steady my voice, and hope that, like me, you’re listening.


Holmes_authorphotoConnor Holmes lives and writes in south Florida with his wife and two crazy dogs. He worked for several years as a crime reporter at his hometown daily newspaper before earning his MFA from the University of Tampa. You can connect with him on Facebook here.


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