I didn’t need a word like this
before my son was born.
But how else can I say what it was,
that insatiable and perilous opening
that appeared before me,
as I held him, three days
after giving birth?
There it was, the Mouth
of Hell, a place whose existence
I had firmly doubted,
and I had been brought there
by the fullness of love,
which, as it expands, deepens
into the space of what we might lose.

As time goes on, though,
I begin to see,
that the opening is in me,
or of me, that the jagged
purple hunger of the pregnant
never leaves, that the secret
and unappeasable
orgasm just keeps rolling on,
that you have no choice but to spend
the rest of your life trying
to keep from panting,
to keep your mouth closed,
your eyes open.

appeared in the anthology The Mom Egg