my sister is half done growing a baby in her belly. i am so so ready, and thrilled, and ready ready ready to meet this little bambino. this is what i want to tell it today:

You Begin
Margaret Atwood

You begin this way:
this is your hand,
this is your eye,
that is a fish, blue and flat
on the paper, almost
the shape of an eye.
This is your mouth, this is an O
or a moon, whichever
you like. This is yellow.
Outside the window
is the rain, green
because it is summer, and beyond that
the trees and then the world,
which is round and has only
the colors of these nine crayons.
This is the world, which is fuller
and more difficult to learn than I have said.
You are right to smudge it that way
with the red and then
the orange: the world burns.
Once you have learned these words
you will learn that there are more
words than you can ever learn.
The word hand floats above your hand
like a small cloud over a lake.
The word hand anchors
your hand to this table,
your hand is a warm stone
I hold between two words.

This is your hand, these are my hands, this is the world,
which is round but not flat and has more colors
than we can see.
It begins, it has an end,
this is what you will
come back to, this is your hand.


was rereading old writings, and this is true now, as then.

They send me an herb garden as a thank you gift. She rubbed my shoulder in the car, and I took the wrong exit. I called him small; he thought me proud. I missed my father, and wished for fuller days.

I could leave here too. I could quit this circle, these older friends, their mistakes already made. I could leave the admitting of lonely, of wanting what they have. I could leave tonight, sit in a hotel in Chattanooga, post my resume on craigslist. I could leave.

I wait for the call, wait by not waiting. Make plans, go camping, get drunk, don’t check to see who has written. Surrounded by fresh babies and women swollen with ready and new, I repeat ‘everything in me is a bird’ and kiss new foreheads and fingers.

My life will be filled with worse things: a long hospital stay, my mother will die too quick, the long and public humiliation, a not-worth-it affair. I will weather them with pride, and friends will call me brave. These slow, lonely days however, just may be my quiet end.