Thursday, June 22, 2006

"Afterbirth" by Keith Harvey


She braced herself
against the bark
of the baobab
and screamed,
her cries startling the hyenas
who chased their stubbed tails
around and around
until dust floated
over the sweet grass
of the savannah
and yellowed the child,
who fell toward earth
in a rush of blood and brine.
Here was her revenge,
her premeditated step
toward reclamation
of the Garden.
She gazed
upon the termite’s tower
that defiantly stood
against the blueness
of the sky
and knew
that this mound
of industry
would be his symbol.
She laughed
once he was free,
lying on the earth,
his uncircumcised member
pointing toward the stars
parallel to the termite’s spire,
because creators
often laugh
after creation,
just as He laughed,
when he pried her
from her man’s
red clay chest.

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