Some time in 1949
I bit another baby
each mother snatched up her child
and words were exchanged--
"Oh, nonsense, Cora," said Mama
(telling grown-up me the story)
"you cant even see the tooth marks"
Rosalie, a middle-aged daughter
is called into my office
to hear the news about her mother:
"The cancers back, its in her liver"
Shell tell her brother
after Christmas well all tell Cora
Could it be the same Cora,
Rosalie the small dark baby
who yanked my golden curls?
Each is the right age
Rosalie leans back
against the nutrition poster
she cant clutch her mother and howl
as my words bite into her