How to survive a miscarriage


Don’t call the doctor
There is no cure
for a ruined fetus

One doctor will tell you
your baby is leaving

One doctor will tell you
your baby might stay

Their white coats are stand ins
for the bigness of sky

and it has nothing to say

Let the blood come
slick and bright

Let it stain

Don’t pray or beg
The world is busy

Keep what you can
before your body breaks

Stitch your terrified limbs
your bare feet,
your clammy hands

To the rich soil
that has betrayed you

Every corner of your form
will need something
to hold on to

When the black flush of death
rises like an iron shadow
beneath your spoiled

To embrace you

Take its hand
It has chosen you


Leave your body
You will find this impossible

The pain will start at work
Days after bleeding begins, finally
your womb contracts
in the middle of a meeting


But cancel your evening plans
In a few hours,
you won’t be able to stand

Lie in bed
Assemble your bones

You will need them

Just when day’s last light

Find your leftover oxycodone
Ransack the bathroom drawer

You won’t remember anything
except the moment you found
a baggie of fat white pills

Take twice the prescribed dosage
Try to sleep

Pain will still drag you
out of indistinct dreams
Claiming its possession

Don’t scream

The bathroom floor will be cold

Lie on it

Your greasy hair curled
around a dirty toilet
Urine pressed on cheek

And when a wet cherry sack
drops out of your center
Your thighs smothered in rust

Take it
Open it, taste it

That was before
This is after
Say it

This hemorrhage is yours