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by Michele Schottelkorb

Womb scars do not a mother make
(but that’s the kind I am)
Surrogate veins of bloodlines (not mine, but I did take)
…sustain me, they did

This tabula rasa today
It is foreign, emptyfull, (familiar)
…An anomaly, yet traces of
Sameness – of paths others walk
(especially sisters – mine – my blood)

Timelines are curious
Sometimes long enough for reflection…………………………………
Sometimes too short for an introduction
- The mother who grieves the unborn babe
- The mother who lives while child decays
(unbearable, yet they carry it, until they don’t)
Sometimes too long and it all gets mangled
- The mother who bellows or quietly rages
- The mother who exits leaving behind complexity and rumination
(for what will never be,
But could have been…
{Maybe was? Was becoming?})

All this… to preface
Two heartbeats, grown inside
My deepest shell –
I did not know…
I knew how not to be Mother
~they taught me well…
One from ignorance is bliss (convenient), one from hate (a choice)

Both used as fuel in my veins of mama with she who was not mine and the two who chose me

All this… to write
Those two heartbeats (overshadowed – but not forgotten, neverno)
That crossed a universe to find me
Bleed love into these veins sustained by my mother (she kept me)
And all those who mothered me (even – and especially – me)
Bleed love to erase the pain of centuries of wounds (the scars remain, but the pain is carried…
With strength and grace, we work to embody)

We tackle generational trauma every day. Every. Single. Day.
We are winning.

Thank you, to my mom (mommymothermomma), for creating me and loving me the best you were able… For being the mother I needed, to become the woman I AM (words of a sister echo in my mind)…

…but, evenmoreso… thank you, to my children, for making me a Mama (words I wrote – eons in the making – so long ago now) …for giving me that choice (in your choosing of me), to break cycles and remember who I AM.

(In this moment, I feel them smiling… our ancestors who could not, but now are whole. And loving. And forevermore.)


Author's Note: it has been a long time.

Posted on 05/09/2021
Copyright © 2022 Michele Schottelkorb

Member Comments on this Poem
Posted by Philip F De Pinto on 07/31/21 at 05:44 PM

Michele. I am surprised why no one has commented on this brilliantly emotional and thoughtful and insightful piece. I am honored in a way to be the first. This poem qualifies to be poem of the day and every day. This poem reminds or should remind us that Mother’s are an every day and not a once a year occasion to celebrate. .

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