Tag Archive for 'shotgun wedding'

From What I Understand About Quilting

by Nicelle Davis

I had an Ectopic pregnancy,             Ectopic means misplaced, I know this from
is what she calls to tell me.           the time I drove a girl from the homeless youth
It has been two years since          shelter to the university hospital. I’d recognized
we graduated from college           her from a random conversation we had together
and I remember liking her,          about Mayo Angelo. I didn’t wait with her in
but can not recall specifics            the emergency room. Instead I asked for a pair
other than we both love Virginia    of gloves to help remove the purple mess of blood
Wolfe. But I recognize her            from my 1979 beater. I remember how shocked
voice, cadence at odds                 I was by the variety of density that came out of her
with the diction, a painful              half afraid that a clot was really some small half
effort to act her age adding girl     formed arm. I prayed before throwing the thing
to the end of sentences                in the bin, not because I was especially close to God
a reminder that she                     but because I was young, scared, and sexually
is twenty-not-forty-something.       active. When I called the next day, a nurse told
I’ve heard you been busy, girl           me the girl had a tubal miscarriage, nothing
referring to my getting knock-       like a person could have been accidentally dumped
up and shotgun hitched.               in the trash. I never found out what happened
                                                   to the girl. At the time, I didn’t think to ask.
People with children speak a secret language-say the same words as people with out kids, but it all means something different. That’s why, when a parent tells their child iloveyou and the child says I know with an annoyance that only repetition can acquire, parents must insist, no you don’t understand iloveyouiloveyouiloveyou until the whole thing feels like spit on a cowlick. Maybe there is a better way to phrase this, though I think it would have to be inappropriately graphic like, for you I would let razor teeth clowns eat my face and suck my brain from a straw jammed up my nose. Maybe it was this feeling that prompted me to offer to bring her soup when I heard she lost the baby.
She’s been working on a      quilt     for the rape recovery
center, where she works with the  mentally  dysfunctional.
She’s collected words from survivors on          poly   ester
rectangles,  measured meticulously. The whole slowly be-
coming the   same shape   as the pieces that comprise it.
Spread      across the floor,         blanket               reads
live/faith/esperanza.                 Utterances of subjectivity,
abstract,   debatably meaningless.      She recently cut her
hair in a maternal fashion.   Is uneasy about how it makes
her look like her mother, when she never               wanted
to be her mother, but always    thought she’d be a mother.
It’s not that she doesn’t like        her mother. It’s just that,
well, she wanted to be her own.                   Have her own.
 
She’s taking a logical approach to the situation. Technically           After I had J.J. my ultra
the child wasn’t lost. Just the opposite. Her body held                   concretive aunt was
tight too soon, fetus catching in the narrow hallway                       kind to tell me sexual
of the fallopian. There was never a heartbeat. Only a clump          relations become again
of cells. She feels fine, so long as she keeps talking.                   possible. I believed her
She admits to having conversations with her pussy, it’s lips           because it was the first 
swollen first to the size of baby cheeks. The incisions made         time I ever heard her
at panty-line, will be covered when her pubic hair fills in.              say the word sex.
After we sit for an hour at her kitchen table, not eating soup, she asks if she could get a lift to the salon down the street. Her mom will be by to pick her up after. She says I rather not walk if I can avoid it, to avoid saying it hurts and I hurt and it doesn’t stop hurting and I want take it out of me this hurt, stitch by stitch until the incision reopens and I can stick my hand up into myself, taking it out and out and out. I say not a problem, meaning itwillbeok knowing that itisnotok, meaning I would like to give you comfort, instead I repeat like a novena after I dropping her off, soup soup soup soup soup soup.

Nicelle Davis lives in Lancaster, California with her husband James and their son J.J. She received her MFA from the University of California, Riverside. She teaches at Antelope Valley College. Her poems are forthcoming in A cappella Zoo, Caesura, Moulin, Pedestal Magazine, Redcations, Transcurrents and Verdad.

 

 

 

 

 




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