Annie Cigic

Feasts of Mourning

Nurses reached into my body
to ripen my cervix. They dropped
pills & a bulb to help the softening
& widening. I told them I could build
contractions on my own,
that I was made
to do this.

When I thought it was over,
I asked which baby in the nursery
was mine. They handed me all
of the squirming & scrunched bodies,
one by one, but none
of them belonged to me.

All the nurses searched my hair,
underneath the door, in the mirror, & down
my throat. I’d trade this feast for another day
I don’t outlive myself. The nurse said it was okay
if I ate the baby because all cute things
are worth devouring.

They told me losing
a baby is the same as the delicacy
of craving—your body tells you something
is missing. It’s the same as dropping
a dozen farm fresh eggs. You clean up
the yolks & eat something else
for breakfast.

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Annie Cigic is a Ph.D. candidate in the Rhetoric and Writing Studies Program at BGSU in Ohio. Her work can be found in Into the Void, Gordon Square Review, Driftwood Press, and elsewhere. Her poems “Afterlife of a Dumped Body” and “An Exploited Body” were nominated for a 2021 and 2022 Pushcart Prize.