You left behind a piece of you
with a piece of me
split and split and
until the bundle of cells began
its journey north
to settle in my
It clung, these pieces of ourselves
to the red walls of the deepest
part of me,
and it grew.
With hands and arms and tadpole
tail, it grew, with legs and toes and see-through skin,
It grew until my skin began
to stretch to accommodate my guest, and
still it grew, until it was no longer it but she, and
still she grew until she had a name, “Adelia,” and
still she grew.
I lie awake at night and feel
this little piece of us
kicking and squirming and waving
tiny hands in a dark pool.
She has invaded every aspect of me–my
body, my soul.
With every breath, she takes in
She is a beautiful parasite,
a being more intimate with me
than any other human.
She is sapping all I have and I
give it all without question, willing her to
only grow and live to see beyond
the confines of my body.
Sarah Burton is mother to five-month-old Adelia, wife to Kevin, and playmate to a dog named Roo. She is a freelance editor living in Tallahassee, Florida, and enjoys making nonsensical sounds with her daughter, eating good food (that she hasn’t had to cook), and exploring historical sites.