Birthing Season

I

It rained at each night’s birth, and I wonder how things never go as we
intended. Each howl is a reminder of how dark it gets as we soldier along
the low visibility from the meconium we dump on ourselves. But we
tunnel our way into that night sky, lapping up any spark and shadow —
teetering between what is and was become us.

It shouldn’t matter because it never did, not to you,
not as much as it did to me. That’s why the day came to you much earlier,
and yet the rain still poured, murky and no matter how you clean it, it stains

between skin and nails, and that spot where it all begins,
between lung and air. I could breathe it in
and drown out of water.

II

Funny as the rain goes farther away, thunder is heard more distinctly.
Still trying to breathe, that was when you cut us off. One by one,
choking through the daylight at night, while the windows shatter
on the white-tile floor. “Water!

I need water!” someone shouted. It was warm
and cold at the same time, what my insides
were telling me my outsides were feeling. Just then, some semblance
of progression, a rhythm that tethered complacency began
to show. Something made me believe
it isn’t suppose to be like this, but nothing
showed me otherwise.

The rain has stopped.

III

Blood and glass litter the once pristine and antiseptic. Shards
get missed, but it doesn’t matter. No one talks about those.
It’s made for an easy clean-up. It all sounds fishy. The smell
was the problem,

stuck to our hair, our skin, even the fresh linen
covering our nakedness did not escape the memory
of the congealed and spent. Our petrichor
binds us all, until we’re not anymore.

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