The 2River View 21.3 (Spring 2017)

Lauren M. Davis

Inside of Women


I knew a woman

after she swam in the ocean
was filled with its sand

and when the doctor removed it

he found inside her a pearl.


Inside tiny apples my lips often find

the core absent of seeds—
many hollow stars

have reminded
that inside me a mouth

would find the same hollow,

my young body / bones too thin,

on a hunger strike.

But tiny sterile apples seem safe for eating.

The Secret

When I forget to say amen
at the end of a prayer
it’s like leaving something
that should be closed

Like I’m not home
and have left a window agape,
and a storm has begun.

Like the rain will enter me,
flush out the things
I’m not ready to part with.

I rushed home
during that storm,
and pushed the heavy glass
up to close where I had once opened it

the water rushed like a tide,
down my forearms,
filled the empty cups of my bra
where lately space has collected.

Papers on my desk below
absorbed the rain,
rusty water filled my mouth.

With a towel I soaked it up,
like I didn’t want anybody to know:
committing to a secret.

These papers will dry
this window I can keep closed / shut
but my aching body
is the one
who will never forgive me,
and will never let me forget
the secret only God knows.
Amen, I am forgiven,
Amen, I must forgive myself.

Lauren M. Davis graduated from the University of Southern Maine with an MFA in poetry. Work from Women Bones has appeared in several literary journals.

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