Motherhood Literature + Art

Anastacia-Reneé – Poems

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Mommy, Mommy, Mommy

the airport kid has beautiful droopy eyes because he is sleepy
& cold & at a weird place when he’s usually in his safe small car bed.
the mom looks absolutely worn out & the older airport kid is practically singing:
& she tells her airport husband they shouldn’t have gotten a red eye with the children
& the droopy eye kid pulls on her shirt & says he has to poop
gets so upset because she’s with out
& hungry
& all out of snacks plus she forgot her favorite book (she wouldn’t have time to read anyway)
& now both kids are doing a duet:
mommy mommy
mommy mommy
mommy mommy
& mommy says something like for the love of jesus just be quiet for the love of jesus she
wishes she could just be alone
& I want to tell her what a black
wouldn’t give to hold her babies for the love of jesus
to sit them in her lap instead
of waiting for a text or phone
call after a day of murder
shootings & Black droopy eyes laid
out on the ground


red folder 1: murderns
mama burdens

the weighty things you schlep to the shower
let the hot water you are grateful for
waterfall on your on-all-day face matra yourself
you are doing all the things. you are doing all
the things right. you are doing all the things you
said you would do. you. are. doing. tell yourself
you cannot fortress your children from racial
absurdities or homophobia. you cannot tell your
children you feel the burden of every om they take
that you are zen & some days namaste is just
a synonym for someone’s bless you.


The Baby

you will not ask that your umbilical cord be broken you will instead ask
that it be made of bees keep your young larva busy & less broken-hearted careful not to pull the stem from his wing let him not swarm his own existence let him not become extinct inside his own comb


What’s the Matter

your baby asks you if the people that were murdered believed in God if the universe was supporting their highest good if they had faith or if they meditated or prayed (            )
there are calculated spaces between each teenage breath like steps or chess moves or loading bullets & he says to you what determines which line you are in//the one that matters or doesn’t matter & how do you know if you are in the mattering one or does it even matter//mass atoms protons neutrons stars gas dust// he wants to know if maybe he’s just an ancient star that’s gonna get eaten up by the weight of the world as a black hole thriving if he will do all the right things then die if he will do all the wrong things then die if he will do nothing then die if he will do everything then die & he gets so frustrated he sucks his perfect teeth & says to you it doesn’t matter (anyway) that he heard a song that said all we are is dust in the wind & he grabs his face to say he feels blown over like a blade of grass underneath a shiny new lawnmower

Anastacia-Reneé is the current Civic Poet of Seattle. She has received writing fellowships from Cave Canem, Hedgebrook, VONA, Artist Trust and Jack Straw, as well as a writing residency from Ragdale. Anastacia-Renee is the Author of five books: Forget It (Black Radish Books), (v.), (Gramma Press) 26, (Dancing Girl Press), Kiss Me Doll Face (Gramma Press) and Answer(Me) (Winged City Chapbooks, Argus Press).


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