She slept on my chest every weekend of her life,
but love’s familiarity evaporates.
Puppy fat stretches over elongating bones,
while affinity withers in each week’s embrace
She’s so close. Her pudgy hand reaches out
through pushchair restraints, her stretch to find mine.
Oh baby girl, I lament, we can’t touch.
This abstraction is hieroglyphs… white noise:
But you my friend. You my auntie.
And you are my Darling, angel girl.
Our attachment is palpable, we both feel it.
And I am so close to
stroking her doughy, velvet cheek,
cupping her delicious double chins in my palms,
planting my kisses into her feathery hair,
squeezing her cherub form into my chest and stomach,
tickling her treasured ribs.
When I next hold her,
we will have been cleaved.
She will be tall, lithe.
We’ll be forgotten.
Sarra Culleno is a British BAME poet, mother and English teacher who performs her writing at events across the UK. She writes about children’s rights, motherhood, identity, gender, age, technology, the environment, politics, modern monogamy and education. Sarra is widely published. She has written fiction and poetry for publication, performance, print, audiodramas, podcasts and radio. Sarra was longlisted for the Cinnamon Press Pamphlet Prize, for Nightingale and Sparrow’s Full Collections 2020, and nominated for Best of the Net 2020 by iambapoet. Sarra co-hosts Write Out Loud at Waterside Arts, and performs as guest and featured poet at numerous literary festivals.