Mine  by Nancy Schatz Alton

I have a body and a mind: it is mine.

It’s mine to redden:

I am blush all over.

I’m the tart lemon I squeeze into my mouth

after I dress the green avocado.

I’m the sum of everything that came before

& I often can’t decide what will come next.

I hold fast to these cells that die off anyway,

my whole body remade again & again,

every 7 years I’m a whole new me.

I’m the headache and the vertigo-style sinus system,

the worrier & the girl that says yes: like me.

& of course I can help you even as I grow weary

and want all the lemons for myself.

Give me every last raspberry, too.

Make me a pie & tell me I’m special.

Oh, I’m my own architect but I look far & wide

at the plans others make

even though I’m surely satisfied

at the way I blush all over,

my system sensitive & full & satiated

by the way the words sound on the page

spoken or silent

these nerve endings that hum

a constant thrum

even as I step away to help

with science homework.



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