Six p.m. winter darkness fills my room,
my heart races and my mouth burns to vomit
as the children race and rage in the other room.
A peaceful-ish day suddenly changed course,
delivered me painful task of breathing, and the urge
to start screaming and never stop.
. . .
Not even the womb is so dark, with the pillow over my head.
My pupils strain to welcome any light, but there is none.
I close my eyes, wondering if this is what it is like, in the black
at the bottom of the ocean, but no,
I can still hear noises from other rooms,
muffled though they are.
. . .
After five minutes, maybe ten, through my breathing,
I sense the quick flap of my daughter’s feet, in her fleece jammies,
as she enters my room, climbs my bed, and pokes me
gently in the stomach.
She pulls the pillow from my head and
curls into my embrace.