One evening, the winter after you were born,
your father looks at me and tells me I am beautiful.
I am pretzeled on the couch, all unbaked arms and legs,
doughy middle. You are attached to my breast, pulling again
at my glasses, my unwashed hair.
Given all this, I ask him, am I doing something beautiful?
Yes, he says, that too.
Shannon J. Curtin is a 2014 Pushcart Prize nominee and the author of two collections of poetry, Motherland (forthcoming from Anchor and Plume Press), and File Cabinet Heart (ELJ Publications), Her poetry has been featured in a variety of literary magazines including Short, Fast, and Deadly, The Muddy River Review, The Mom Egg Review, and The Elephant Journal. She holds an MBA, competitive shooting records, and her liquor. She’s the mother of Quinn, a real boy, and Bruno a dog that wishes he was a real boy. She would probably like you. You can find her at www.shannomazur.com and @Shannon_Mazur.