Saturday, 12 March 2022


by Sara Backer

Friend after friend moves
into the motherhood,
my hand unthinkingly dropped.
Though full friends before,
mothers need other mothers more.

As bystander, babysitter,
I only witness
that fierce bond, that richness,
the wonder, the children
who shape their lives.

Our context wanes, the distance
between mothers and Minervas
goes unspoken.
Grandchildren double
the distance.

Let us few, the childless,
often maligned as selfish or shrewd,
claim for ourselves the least-liked moon:
snow moon, bone moon,
bare moon of winter.

A moon for women who couldn’t
or didn’t—unable, afraid, or wise.
In bare rooms, we’ll cook bone soup.
Nourished by marrow,
no longer outcast.

Later, we’ll welcome the daughters
of others into our moonhood, 
and show them the magnitude
of night—of shadow, ice,
and sparkle.

* * * * *

Sara Backer’s first book of poetry, Such Luck (Flowstone Press) follows two chapbooks: Scavenger Hunt (dancing girl press) and Bicycle Lotus (Left Fork) which won a Turtle Island Poetry Award. Her writing was recently honored with a prize in the Plough Poetry Competition. She lives in the Merrimack River watershed amid white pines, red oaks, and black bears.

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