To my daughter on the occasion of her mother’s birth

Note: This poem by Sierra Black is a reprint from July 22, 2004 on ChildWild.

Tiny goddess of my body
I’m twenty-six today, and you have
Two months and two days even
In the world.

The tail end of our nap this afternoon found you curled
Against my skin as if you
Did not care if we were one or two.

Startled by the beauty of your eyes, I
(inadvertently) dropped a book on your head.
A slim paperback volume
Titled simply “desire”

A gift from your father,
A memory bridge to a life
Before yours when I called myself words
Like writer, like lover, like object of

Your face turned purple and red
A storm of noise rose
From the fragile valley of your throat.
Lips taut
Watery eyes seeking justice against
This painful intrusion of your mother’s past.

I cast aside “Desire”,
It slips behind the bed,
Lost to a realm of darkness, missing socks and dust bunnies,
While I curl close around your milk-wet head
An offering of breast and you
Suck me into a time when we lie
Sated in our world of milk and curls.


Sierra Black is a blogger, writer and mother. Her personal essays have appeared in Mothering Magazine, the New York Times and Babble. Sierra writes primarily about parenting, personal finance and green living. When she’s not chasing deadlines or toddlers, Sierra spends her time gardening, crafting and finding new non-toxic ways to get crayon off the walls. Before she answered to Mommy, Sierra was a features reporter for the Eagle-Tribune newspaper. Check out her personal blog, ChildWild.

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