I hear my mother’s voice in my younger ear,
you have a swallow of milk left dear & I am
ashamed of all the swallows I have since poured
down the drain, leftover words I ate & every memory
I made fresh for you thinking I could take her place–
in this world, this life, this moment. The most
vulnerable I’ve ever been was stuck in your vision
of what a woman is & should be.
I hide in another’s hallow, waiting for my spring
to arrive, to escape the cell of winter, all the white cold.
The season rolls by & in time an explosion of growth
settles around my home.
I hunger for a handful of sunrises, to show the lines
& folds of my body in the light. The scars of long ago–
so deep they can be seen from outer space.
Night passes between the pale hand & the knife.
Yours, mine, ours. I return to it again.
In the Hall of Crucifixion, I ignore the rose window,
the brilliant blue & red glass, to admire you instead.
Your smile says you will have me, all that I am.
I approach you with a sign on my back: beware the sinkhole.
Sarah Marquez is an MA candidate at Southern New Hampshire University. Her work is forthcoming in Amethyst Review and Marias at Sampaguitas. When not writing, she can be found reading, sipping coffee, or tweeting. “I write to remember who I am, where I came from, what I am becoming. The female voice has been and always will be crucial in poetry.”