Postpartum

Hiromi Itō

 
Childbirth was not dying nor defecating
Childbirth was just a very painful period
For the thirty-seven hours from beginning to end
I kept on bleeding just as if
I were having my period
I wanted to change my maxi pad, change it right away
I was constantly aware of my anus but
I knew I didn't have to defecate
The pain was unpleasant, nothing more
The pain was unpleasant
The pain was unpleasant
Dying is unpleasant
Unpleasant
April 30, 9:47 am, a baby girl
3,650 grams, 51 centimeters
After twenty-four hours have passed, the newborn is brought from the nursery and allowed
to be with the mother. A bed for the newborn is placed to the side of the mother's bed, but
everyone puts their baby in the bed with them and sleeps next to it. The bed for the newborn is
so high that unless the mother lifts herself up, she cannot see it.
My baby kept vomiting amniotic fluid in the nursery
May 1, 9:47 am, twenty-four hours had gone by, but there she stayed
May 1, the afternoon goes by and still no baby
May 2, the whole day goes by and still no baby
May 3, the whole morning and still no baby
There is no baby
Anywhere
I haven't started lactating, of course
May 3, 1 pm, the baby arrived
And has existed ever since
 
From Killing Kanoko. Copyright © 2009 by Jeffrey Angles. Used with permission of Action Books.

Poems by This Author

So as Not to Distort by Hiromi Itō
I make shiratama


Further Reading

Poems About Mothers
Disciplines [If there is prayer, there is a mother kneeling]
by Dawn Lundy Martin
Kaddish, Part I
by Allen Ginsberg
a woman peeling apples, with a small child
by Pattie McCarthy
Beasts
by Carmen Giménez Smith
Chorus
by Catherine Barnett
Exile
by Alicia Suskin Ostriker
Getting Close
by Victoria Redel
Jugglers
by Francisco Aragón
Lucky
by Tony Hoagland
Mama, Come Back
by Nellie Wong
Measurement Fable
by Rusty Morrison
Metamorphosis
by James Richardson
Mother
by Lola Ridge
Mother
by Herman de Coninck
Mother Ann Tells Lucy What Gave Her Joy
by Arra Lynn Ross
Mother o' Mine
by Rudyard Kipling
Mother's Day
by David Young
My Mother on an Evening in Late Summer
by Mark Strand
My Mother Was No White Dove
by Reginald Shepherd
My Mother Would Be a Falconress
by Robert Duncan
My Mother's Funeral
by Ira Sadoff
Parents
by William Meredith
Picking Up
by Evelyn Duncan
Poems about Motherhood
Postcards
by E. Ethelbert Miller
Rock Me to Sleep
by Elizabeth Akers Allen
She Leaves Me Again, Six Months Later
by Collier Nogues
The Player Queen
by W. B. Yeats
The Routine Things Around the House
by Stephen Dunn
The Visit
by Jason Shinder
They Call This
by C. K. Williams
To My Mother
by Edgar Allan Poe
To My Mother
by Christina Rossetti
To My Mother
by Robert Louis Stevenson
To My Mother Waiting on 10/01/54
by Teresa Carson
Untitled [A house just like his mother's]
by Gregory Orr
Wedding Cake
by Naomi Shihab Nye
With Child
by Genevieve Taggard
[Sonnets are full of love, and this my tome]
by Christina Rossetti