by Chloe Jacobs
I wonder if my mother, younger,
Hair bleached summer blonde
And smelling, strong, of chlorine,
Ever pictured this.
This cold place,
That borrowed home,
Her careful calculus of living.
They say you give a part
Of yourself, to your child.
Inventory: eyes, nose, lips, fear,
Hands like mine hand them to me.
Perhaps this is why I so jealously
guard the sacred parts of me,
No young usurper with my smile.