i woke up to my uterus screaming. i woke up sick with longing for the four-hundredth day. in spring i rode a seattle bus with J & there my fingers shook like drowning worms. every second there’s a part of me that’s tightening. i don’t mind dripping blood from my soft tissues / from my insides / i don’t mind. i don’t trust anyone or any cell to stay. i stood in a conference room in washington to orate on carnage & meanwhile my uterus wrung itself out. i don’t mind being dangerous / i don’t mind a dead egg in my crotch. see all these things i can do that you can’t. but if you held my hands they wouldn’t quiver. if you held my tongue i would break your teeth. you keep insisting i’m a good little girl but i don’t think you’ve tasted my blood. no you haven’t. add some splenda to it / throw some drops in your tea. tomorrow i’ll wake up to a mouth i’ve sewn shut in my sleep & all i need to find is the needle. you say is it my mouth or yours / is it my mouth or yours / my mouth will never touch yours. wake up. watch my body move in ways yours never will.
MAGGIE WOODWARD is an MFA candidate in poetry at the University of Mississippi, where she is senior editor of the Yalobusha Review, curator of the Trobar Ric reading series, and a programmer for the oxford film festival. her work has appeared or is forthcoming from Atlas Review, Devil’s Lake, Nightjar Review, Witch Craft Mag, & Inferior Planets, among others. you can find her online at http://www.maggie-woodward.com.