having spirits leave my body
curled up and hurting
clutching rocks and praying on the forest floor
the moon bleeding out of me
requesting children and a flood of children appearing to hold my hand and walk me through their lives
requesting children and being sent whales, and guava, and dolphin-eyes and pregnant dolphins and fishes and eels and the Io Valley
requesting children and finding loneliness and drinking and comfort of friends
requesting children and finding no-job
requesting children and going to grad school instead
requesting children and finding myself as my own child
requesting children and making my house into a joyful place for everyone
requesting children and encountering Indira’s Net again and again
requesting children and receiving dreams, and poetry, and stories of other women
requesting children and continuing to walk with them down the paths of neighborhoods
requesting children and watching love unfurl in others around me
requesting children and encountering rage, and more blood
requesting children and facing my fear of the dark, and aloneness
requesting children and one heard me, and made an agreement, through several strange trials, and made of me a chrysalis , a chrysalis who repeated the Bene Gesserit litany against fear into the mirror on a daily basis, a chrysalis who could not eat enough, or get out of bed most days, a chrysalis who dreamed, and dreamed, and dreamed as if making up for lost time on the way, a chrysalis who read and watched movies and frequented target and made tallies of the items necessary, a chrysalis who swam and chanted mantras into the ceiling of the gym pool, a chrysalis who was able to leave world-worry for focused task, and then endure a trial by fire of ancestor women in caves, the long lineage weaving and winding, sending smoke in lines through the ages humming and murmuring by fires, the ash lines being drawn out, predictions made, singing, making enchantments over the mouths of those venturing near to hear the cries of the mother, the first cries of the baby, say nothing that is not peaceful, encouraging, say nothing of fear, of potential of danger, do not call the darkness in. women with black smudged mouths and eyes keeping rattles occupied, drum skins tight and soft talking and in communication with that which is making its way though.
in spanish an expression for “giving birth” is “dar la luz,” meaning to give the light. bringing light through the tunnel, through the fire, through that which we have forgotten, or do not know, bringing the light.
my child, when he was born, was pearlescent, and quiet. he was tired, the journey was long and his ears were still whooshing with heartbeat and intestine and exhale. the midwife picked up his left pinky finger, splayed on my chest, and he opened one eye like a napping old man, scrunching up his face. with what emotion? raw exhaustion? disbelief?
it takes a long time, it takes a long time, it takes a long time.