Jennifer A. McGowan: a poem


Photograph by Dels Richter


Nut, the Sky

It would be easier to be a cow

or a sow of many dugs, nursing

the stars. Only the tips of my toes

and fingers may touch the earth.

I give birth twice a day. The rest

is labour pangs, worse than the birth

of my own little children.

Children, your faces light up the sky,

more than the stars. Remember that.

Yet it is enough to grace the feet

and face of my husband, stroke his flesh

gently, softly murmur his name.

It is enough to swallow hot sun, cold moon,

hear poetry cried by the dying. I regret nothing.


Jennifer A. McGowan’s latest pamphlet, Still Lives with Apocalypse, won the Prole Pamphlet Competition this year. She’s a professional calligrapher and illuminator, is disabled, and prefers the fifteenth century to the twenty-first.