I prayed and begged for, demanded 

a small dark girl child

because I’d already seen her in my dreams—

she was real    born alive    I could smell her.

I didn’t want the ultrasound’s eye of prediction,

no, I needed that baby girl in my arms.

Before she was born I’d already imprinted, 

rocking in a chair, everything I knew to her,

the big belly of her swaying as I spoke of what 

to put up with and what shit to not put up with,

and then I heard my god say Love her not too much, 

too much; allow her to make her own way.



phrase “love her not too much, too much” from  “Beauty” by Elinor Wylie, 1921.