National Poetry Month Day 14: Meg Day

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To My Brother, in Her Barrenness
for Mitch

So this is poverty. So
immaculate conception
is all that’s left. A family
walks five across down
Alice Street, little fingers
on a hand & the thumb
is kicking trash. What past
life gone wrong blessed
that womb’s fruit, ripened
it into this uninhabitable
time? The second hand
has all but disappeared.
Who’s to say we won’t
ripen too: stay was a word
I finally knew after teaching
a mutt to do what I couldn’t.
Will you put that fist in
the air with mine like a swear
you can’t take back? C’mon
Brother: we must be near
the bottom of goodbye
by now. It’s morning again
& outside a child is yelling
Not it! Not it! & someone
keeps asking, Do we have to
live through this again? It’s you,
Brother. We don’t.


Meg Day is the 2015-2016 recipient of the Amy Lowell Poetry Travelling Scholarship, a 2013 recipient of an NEA Fellowship in Poetry, and the author of Last Psalm at Sea Level (Barrow Street, 2014). Day teaches at Franklin & Marshall College and lives Pennsylvania. Find more at www.megday.com. More from this author →