Emily Dickenson - I am alive - I guess

I am alive - I guess

I am alive -- I guess --
The Branches on my Hand
Are full of Morning Glory --
And at my finger's end --

The Carmine -- tingles warm --
And if I hold a Glass
Across my Mouth -- it blurs it --
Physician's -- proof of Breath --

I am alive -- because
I am not in a Room --
The Parlor -- Commonly -- it is --
So Visitors may come --

And lean -- and view it sidewise --
And add "How cold -- it grew" --
And "Was it conscious -- when it stepped
In Immortality?"

I am alive -- because
I do not own a House --
Entitled to myself -- precise --
And fitting no one else --

And marked my Girlhood's name --
So Visitors may know
Which Door is mine -- and not mistake --
And try another Key --

How good -- to be alive!
How infinite -- to be
Alive -- two-fold -- The Birth I had --
And this -- besides, in -- Thee!

By Emily Dickenson

It is so good to be alive. Today as the weather in Texas finally feels like it should, cool and sunny, just in time for Thanksgiving next week. I am typing (one handed) with a sweet warm person, blanket wrapped, in my lap. It is good to be alive.

I am looking for poems that are all about birth and motherhood. I am telling you, they are hard to find. If anyone knows of any, please send me a link. Or if you have written one yourself, would you share? I want to read poetic visions of this most beautiful state of being.

Here is one I wrote for Max:

November Baby

bundled against this new cold
more a reminder of the place from which he came
wrapped these past months
an early gift

he breathes without me now
he thinks behind that rapid eye movement
his body a portal for a life untold
footfalls to be filmed
pre-whispers written

here I am again in love with the
necessary curling of limbs
the soft skull
it’s delicate hollow unfilled,
unfocused eyes,
mind not yet made up
on whether he likes the cold
his mother’s cradle, brown blankets
blue soother, bassinet, bouncy seat

the stroller waiting outside
to take him to new places
to the gate at the end of the drive.


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