a literary journal published by the Black Earth Institute dedicated to re-forging the links between art and spirit, earth and society
yet I grew him inside of me. Now in Big Ugly,
it’s December-cold. My jacket is thin, streaked hair
uncombed, but, since momma says fresh air is
good, I have carried him out. He’s warm in
his blanket, warm against my chest. Yes, though
I know how he got in me, I will never tell.
There’s black in my nails from digging potatoes
or from diaper changing. So what? For me, no
cross-country, no art, no 8th grade swing dance.
I walk far and farther, will leave him in the manger
at the creekside church. He does not want to
be my brother, and I do not want one more boy in
the house. “Well…goodbye,” I tell him. “Have
a real good life, dude.” Then his eyes snap open. Then
he grabs hold of my scuzzy hair and will not let go.
Susan Terris’ most recent book is Ghost of Yesterday: New & Selected Poems (Marsh Hawk Press). She is the author of 6 books of poetry, 16 chapbooks, 3 artist’s books, and one play. Journal publications include The Southern Review, Denver Quarterly, Arts & Letters, and Ploughshares. A poem of hers from FIELD appeared in Pushcart Prize XXXI. She’s editor of Spillway Magazine. Her chapbook Memos was published by Omnidawn in 2015. A poem from this book was selected for Best American Poetry 2015. Omnidawn will publish her book Take Two: Film Studies in 2017. www.susanterris.com