Stoma

by Laurie Byro
About Poetry Forum
Honorable Mention, February 2008
Judged by Fleda Brown


The bag my mother carries coos
like a muffled baby owl. She hides it on
her side like a purse with gold and silver
coins left to spend. When she moves it gurgles

like a sooty faced bird, more raven than eagle.
She is self conscious, afraid it will fly away
without her. She fears her life will be set loose
like a snake in its hungry beak. What is left,

after the surgeons cut part of her away,
is this graceless winged woman, a white gown
instead of plumes, a thatch of broken weeds.

The doctor has no magic tricks up his sleeves. She sits
on her nest incubating regret, hums while morning
streaks the sky red. She waits on her little clay throne.



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