Friday, April 5, 2019

No One Thing Should Hurt This Much by Isabelle Doyle

She used to melt me down and hold me
in the palm of her hand, pick me up and
sling me narrow across her narrow shoulder,
swing me all the way home, and when
I was too young to eat right, rub her thumb
across butter on my cheekbone, tell me over
and over You’re a really good daughter
until I believed her, until the year
of the snakehole, year of the nightcrawler,
year even June was January and midnights
only unspooled into mourning. I wore her
thought like a soft diamond. I pulled
her shape like a cloak over my head
to keep me from rain, I stayed close
as dawn drew a lithe hand across the sky,
five fingers of light. I lay my body down
beside herlessness. Her end like knives.
Pain powdered and hardened into capsules,
pain like medicine, pain taken with breakfast
and washed down with water. I am
a really good daughter. I am so complete
with knowing her and so halved by loss:
no more sugar cubes, no more grapefruit juice,
no more ringed fingers in my hair, only a body
in the world where God once was, no one
thing should hurt this much, O my woman
without end, amen amen amen.

Isabelle Doyle is a fourth-year undergraduate student at Brown University, studying English and Literary Arts. Her poetry has been published in such literary magazines as Bluestem Magazine, Typo Magazine, Thin Noon, Cargoes, The Blue Pencil Online, The Round, Clerestory, and Triangle. Her full-length poetry manuscript, BABYFACE, was the 2018 recipient of the Frances Mason Harris Prize, established in 1983, which is awarded annually to a woman undergraduate or graduate student at Brown University for a book-length manuscript of poetry or prose-fiction.

No comments:

Post a Comment