I cooked my little children in the sun.
I threw grass on them and then they died.
I sit here now and wonder what I’ve done.
Death is but a heap of dried-up dolphins
whose fleshy leap and shine we can’t imagine.
That’s why I get back to work
and listen to my clock and not my mind.
Wisdom ticks against the wise man
who tries to teach the wicked to be kind
(but my eyes are holes and his old breath
just whistles through the sagebrush
in my garden). The only seed with stamina
is time. Evening’s climbing down
into the cauldron, then rising in the steam
that fills my nose. Ticking, tocking,
that’s all I put my faith in.
It’s no different to be lilies-of-the-valley
and rub a human ankle with a fragrance
than to be the flaky thing that turns it
cold, no different to have ridden silver waves
than be the one to break them—babies,
babies, looking at the sky with so much love.
As I bent to light your toes, the second
split and I was witch but still your mother.