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On Emotion

It was inside, gathering heat in her blood, slowly killing her.

No one said a word.

And this grew her fury further, grieved her immeasurably.

What did it look like.

A knot, or a slag of granite.

I imagined another brother, unborn for he was only a knot.

How my granite brother would never leave her.

I grew up in her abject sadness, which soon became our speaking.

And then I left.

Smaller, smaller, he was her favorite.

Jays nag the first light.

And now I am awake before dawn hoping today is a day when I won’t

have to say anything.

And then I.

To me, it was unintelligible.

I could see through her skin, see my brother not growing inside her.

Would he ever come outside.

The raging jays, the squawking catastrophe.

I wanted to know.

What is the difference between a son and a daughter, I wanted to know.

That is private.

That was her answer.

from Some Say the LarkFind more by Jennifer Chang at the library

Copyright © 2017 Jennifer Chang
Used with the permission of The Permissions Company, LLC on behalf of Alice James Books.

Published in Jennifer Chang Poems

This program is supported in part by a grant from the Idaho Humanities Council, a State-based program of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this (publication, website, exhibit, etc.) do not necessarily represent those of the Idaho Humanities Council or the National Endowment for the Humanities.