Michelle Brittan Rosado – Postpartum Ars Poetica III: Work

Michelle Brittan Rosado

Postpartum Ars Poetica III: Work

The flower shop marquee says, remember
your loved ones. A line appears
between my brows and stays there 

the rest of my life. I tell all 
my poems to Siri. Write a note. Add 
more. She thinks the poem has ended 

because a driver cut me off 
and I stopped speaking. Three times 
a week for an hour round-trip 

I try to think of something 
metaphorical. Most weeks 
I can’t. Most weeks I’m thinking 

or remembering and it’s recorded 
nowhere except maybe the line 
between my brows I keep checking 

in the sunvisor mirror. I title each poem 
poem so I don’t lose it in the Notes 
app amongst the shopping lists 

and the errands and the login 
credentials. Siri thinks poem 
is palm. It’s been so long 

since I’ve said the word poem aloud maybe 
I’ve forgotten how to pronounce it. At night 
I nurse the baby and pull my finger down 

the screen’s brightness like an eyelid 
and insert all the line breaks, the phone 
saying return return return.

Author’s note: The poems in this series all use the image of a window as their starting point, some in the title itself and others more peripherally. I’ve been thinking of this symbol a lot lately — as a portal for wonder in childhood, an aperture to others’ lives during the pandemic, a view of the world outside after giving birth and spending those early days indoors. These poems may not have come into existence without the invitation to contribute to The Fresno 15, and I am endlessly grateful to the MFA program for my years there and the deep sense of community I’ve carried with me since graduating in 2011. Thank you for reading and for supporting the Larry Levis Memorial Scholarship. 

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