Poems & Essays

23 Nov

Café Mollien While Pregnant

Babyhood No Response

I remember the day I walked through
museums in Paris, the Louvre where
blue tilted through glass clouds as we 
viewed the masterpieces. You were 
only a tiny embryo folded inside me, 
as I’d place my fingers on my belly 
and say, here is a Picasso, a Rembrandt 
a Botticelli, to the gentle hush beneath me. 

And it’s funny now, remembering
a moment of feeling so tired, I sat down 
in a wicker chair in a small cafe beside 
the gallery, my legs swollen, I was happy 
when the French waiter offered me a glass
of water with fizz, but when I said I wasn’t 
hungry, and wouldn’t be ordering food,
he took it away, and I watched the sun
dip through the sky through the window

But today I’d like to say, thank you, 
to that server, for reminding me there’s 
always a bit of cruelty somewhere 

to be found even in the midst of beauty.

Carol Lynn Stevenson Grellas is a ten-time Pushcart Prize nominee and a seven-time Best of the Net nominee. In 2012 she won the Red Ochre Chapbook Contest, with her manuscript, Before I Go to Sleep. In 2018 her book In the Making of Goodbyes was nominated for a national book award and her poem A Mall in California took 2nd place for the Jack Kerouac Poetry Prize. In 2019 her chapbook An Ode to Hope in the Midst of Pandemonium was a finalist in the Eric Hoffer Book Awards. She is the former Editor-in-Chief for The Orchards Poetry Journal and Co-Editor-in-Chief for the Tule Review. She is a member of the Sacramento Poetry Center Board of Directors and Saratoga Author’s Hall of Fame. She is currently enrolled in the Vermont College of Fine Arts MFA in Writing program.

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Desire Line November 23, 2020