mama begs her baby for some wishes and she says
pointing to the center: dead dead dead.
from the outskirt of a circle, vicious thumping at a chest
seeing centered on the enemies, bring their heads
baby hasn’t tasted teat milk and hasn’t yarn to spin
and she weaves from empty spools
and she blankets mama’s din
is there a right side to a spiral, sinking slurping down a drain?
or is this our sovereign swamp, the bugaboos’ terrain?
treading tired on the peat are these calloused childs’ feet
and while mama’s pleading patience,
baby sinks beyond her knees
still she’s steeled and seeking saviors, weak and vapid and in gloom
but if meaning is the matter, this miasma metes a vacuum
and so mama’s sipping stomach acid
in intrinsic flagellation, begging baby choose:
leaky canoe, cement shoes, what to do?
baby blinks and says to mama: lead or lose,