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Who Is Your MotherThere is no tired like new-mother,
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brand-new mother exhausted.
Sleep a while; please sleep a while.
I tuck your arms into soft fleece, mark the 'O'
of your tiny mouth as I do it, crook you
in one elbow. We are surely alone, and slip
into dreams, you and this woman
who is your mother, drowning together
in pillows, bed-sheets, down.
There is no fear like new-mother,
groggy, incision-pain, narcotic-haze,
frantic new-mother terror. Sleep
a while; please sleep a while.
My heart lurches -- stops -- breaks.
I jolt across the bed, scanning
your tiny face for breathing signs,
a twitch, a sigh. We are still alone
and when you move, I crook you back
into my elbow. Sleep a while.