Adrien Millet CC
Praise Be My Body
How many times have I told my hands thank you?
When I say I love myself, I mean to mean my creaky bones that ache and bend.
I mean this skin with its maps and marks.
It holds me in, shows where I’ve been.
So many times I’ve wanted to shed this body that made me such a home, a church
for all the human doings. Thank you, body. I adore you.
You fed my three babies, each for a year.
How did I ever dare denigrate you?
When is the last time I told my neck, I am in awe of you?
How well you turn so I can breathe when I swim.
When did I last thank my eyes for all their tears, their ways of finding exits.
What about elbows? How lucky to have them. How sweet to bend.
These legs that carry me. Oh my own delicious thighs.
Magnificent feet hold weight, carry me in all directions. Thank you, feet.
Thank you voice and belly and back that has been both beast and bridge .
I know you hurt. How I love you and your spine that holds me upright.
Body, I have hid in you before. Body, I have denied you,
spent weeks and month and years flaying away at you.
Show me what hurts. I will listen to your pain.
Take up all the space you need.
I will take you to our favorite places, the woods and the beach,
the town pool where my children laugh and joy lights their faces,
where I jump in and race the lifeguards, where I slowly exhale
all my air, lie on my back at the bottom of the pool without moving.
When I finally come up for air and my kids gather round
saying mama, how’d you do that?
All you do is let out all your air and let your body drop.
It’s easy. I tell them. Let me show you.
Linda Carney-Goodrich is a Boston based writer and teacher. Her work has been published in the Muddy River Poetry Review, Literary Mama, WordGathering, Gyroscope Review, and in City of Notions: An Anthology of Contemporary Boston Poems. Her poems have been displayed on the walls of Boston City Hall as part of the annual Boston Mayor's Poetry Program selected by the Boston Poet Laureate.
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.