I  am   trying to  bear a child   before  my   grandmother dies.   No  secretly  slipped  condom, no 
clenching cum  like a bite of water, no. Rather I scour subways for a mate, reach  for the crisis of 
give or keep so that in her life, my second-womb, my ultra-mother, might have a four-generation 
photo to email New Mexico’s Maureen. So  that Mimi, my one-queen, my heart’s graffiti, can die 
in quiet disaster, spilling from this planet to that, secure in the decision of her progeny. And if, in 
these  formative years  of her aging,  in these  unraveling ones of mine,  I do  not meet  the lover 
around  whose fingers  I can  fit myself  completely, then I shall   pray with the parish of my back: 
Let me  be our  Mary.  Toss my  insides  into Armageddon, give   myself unto myself and like the 
glorified carpenter you are, construct stemmed legs and a tiny heart in the  cake of me. Bring one 
immaculate  child into this sore world. Let her  be mine. Let my  grandmother  hold her just once.

Marney Rathbun

Marney Rathbun

Marney Rathbun is a poet and teacher in New York City. Her work can be seen in Reservoir Literary Journal, and in her chapbook I call my father by his name, winner of the 2016 Jubilat Makes A Chapbook competition. She is currently pursuing her MFA in Creative Writing at New York University. She will survive the apocalypse by laughing.
Marney Rathbun

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