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February 1, 2017 | Poetry

Once, on a full moon, I started sobbing

E Yeon Chang

Once, on a full moon, I started sobbing photo

Corea

Mother, you are bold eyebrows and
strong shoulders: vision of
monstrous femininity. Earth
must have taken to your beauty,

modeled Her curves after yours. Please
never tremble— never trouble
My World, or else whose lips
shall I trace to know when to smile?

 

Once, on a full moon, I started sobbing

This is not a matter of walking dark streets breasted, I am unafraid of cocks. I am a woman, have only been all woman, never animal. I do not respond whenever a dog barks so why would I bother when the cats call? It’s just that a boy was once hungry enough to skin me alive and when the nights fall I shiver at the familiarity.

 

After Time

I have watched too much reality TV about Kimye and teen mothers. This is why I cannot explain April like a normal person. All I know is if E! handled the news it would have called Sewol a miscarriage and everybody would have understood. We would know what to call mothers without children, a sea full of small shoes. We would know better than to call the babies bastards; the sea has come and claimed them all.

On April 16, 2014, South Korean Ferry Sewol carrying 325 high school students capsized; amidst mostly sympathetic response, cruel attention seekers emerged from the tragedy.

 

image: Carabella Sands


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