My Daughter

I have been told we look alike
my daughter
our frames broad, our faces bold
so many mannerisms the same.

I have waited for this day
when another mother would hold you
in her arms
as well as in her heart
and I wanted so much for you on this day –
a loving family
brothers, sisters, grandparents, monsters.
Yes, I wanted monsters
thrashing hideous creatures
I wanted all this for you, all together, all at once
like a circus. Like a scream.

I remember the day you were delivered to me
a baby girl, the sweetest of gifts.
It was a day that was sticky with heat
and love and life and all things messy
how you grasped onto me
with your tiny fingers
fingers that would soon be sticky
with all that was new and wonderful.
I was humming along with the bees in my garden that day
and the neighbourhood was a-buzz with the news of you
my daughter

But you are our daughter now
and for you a gap in a curtain
has become a window of opportunity.
They tell me all this will only bring us closer
and while this may be true
I can feel the shearing of skin
the wrenching hole in my belly
the same cavernous hole
that screamed to me with its bloody gaping mouth
and swallowed me whole those long nights
I held my barren womb to me
as if it were the still-warm body of a still-born child.

My useless insides have been scooped out long ago
but still I feel as if something has been torn from me
ripped from my body
leaving a jagged, ragged hole.
As if you, my daughter
had indeed been of this mother born and taken
in stealth and silence
to the outstretched arms of another.