” We have been wounded by it (giving)” –Alberto Rios
Giving: What it Takes
My car door slammer,
Full of intensity and scowl
Full of cat eyes and hoop earrings
Looking for that fight
In a red dress too tight
and sneakers to run
Looking just like me.
You never wanted me, she says.
The words leave her lips and
I watch as they fly through the air
hip pistol air
shot through to my heart if she could aim
I duck and swerve, duck and swerve
Still a couple of those shots always get through
I tell her her mama was about choices
Plenty of potential went unbirthed
A mother of choices, a mother of invention
A mother of not needing to be a mother at all
A mother not born of social conditioning.
I chose you. I choose you.
I did not have to and I gave you life.
The way one goddess births another.
She’s quiet for a moment
Looks for wisdom outside the passenger window
The rocks and the river below us
pushing and shaping the landscape.
The wildness reminding so much can change
in an moment of weakness, of inexperience.
You can slip and lose your footing.
You can wash away.
She reaches over to me. Touches my hand
In this moment, this is all we have.