When Tony Hoagland Says
My Maternal Instincts
Are Impressive
I think maybe he means my plumage
does not distract from my talons.

How in the requiem of my ovaries
I am building a barn full of pianos.

Or perhaps my fears still wear
their oversized clothing?

I don't know what he means.
Some people will eat anything.

I wish I dreamed of wild horses
instead of hamsters.

When Persephone fell down
off the bathroom counter

I tried all night to bring her back.
She had six babies to feed,

each smaller than my pinky.
So even after her sister Luna

chewed off half her face, I let
those blind squirming erasers suck

their dead mother until I had to
pluck them off one by one by one.

--- Jenny Browne © 2015
The Boston Review
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