In the End
by Catherine Arra
You will carry her as she carried you—
labor heavy-footed the hot months of summer,
her joyous belly weight leading, calling you
by name so you’d know her,
be ready to greet your first day.
You will stay her bedside,
await the passage, hold her crepe-thin hand,
breathe into her eclipsed scent, exhale face to face
to fill her lungs, legs, feet
with the will to go.
You will wait the hours, the days
as she did for you.
You will labor heavy-footed
these hot months of summer.
You will deliver her.
* * * * *
"In the End" is in Catherine Arra's newest book, Writing in the Ether (Dos Madres Press, December 2018).
Catherine Arra is the author of three chapbooks, Slamming & Splitting (Red Ochre Press, 2014), Loving from the Backbone (Flutter Press, 2015), and Tales of Intrigue & Plumage (FutureCycle Press, 2017). Her first full-length collection of poetry and short prose, Writing in the Ether, was recently published by Dos Madres Press. Arra is a native of the Hudson Valley in upstate New York, where she teaches part-time and facilitates local writing groups. Find her at