From the Chair  |  In Print  | Panels & Presentations  |  Awards & Appointments  |  Miscellany  |  From the Editor

by Lara Parks 

The bulges of a womanly body strewn with stretch marks
remind me of where I have been.
Lends thought to fruits, with thin outer coverings.
Succulent and nourishing; the inner flesh.
Bottom heavy, plump, and smooth.
Slightly speckled, glowing, green and new.

Like cycles of seasons, my family
filled with women, their tender wants and needs.
Do we think that fruits have rules of conduct?
Do they find importance in appropriateness?
Is that what locks them within their thinning fleshy suits,
waiting to be split open?

“You have her hands,” they tell me.
I trace lines on my palms and think of their purpose.
Feminine, smooth like the skin of fruits, uncalloused 
and providing.
With ink and thread wrapped needles,
I change the hands and make them my own.
I make my hands beyond what is right.
They become unexpected, and inappropriate.

The broken spirit of my mother, of women through generations,
becomes a roughly tattooed heart forever set into my hands.
Showing that I am not her, but someone 
set apart.

I am not fruit, smooth and providing,
but feminine still.
Filled with unswallowed freewill.

[ Back to TCR ]