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Poetry and Medicine
February 9, 2005

News of Infertility

Author Affiliations

Poetry and Medicine Section Editor: Charlene Breedlove, Associate Editor. Poems may be submitted to charlene_breedlove@jama-archives.org.

JAMA. 2005;293(6):657. doi:10.1001/jama.293.6.657

Salt in your fields,
your genes like hungry children
who will tug the covers back
most nights, to touch their small
hands, cold to your shoulder,
begging food
Moon after moon, their insistence
and a hollow womb, two
fallow breasts, your own need
low in your belly—no answer,
though they will wake you
again and again.
Sharecropper poor,
you must reap what you can
from the least of another’s lean,
uneven ground, from soil
more clay than loam
and a hard plow—love
is known to thrive even
in wastelands, among boulders,
in spaces of broken stone.

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