A LETTER TO THE
WOMAN THAT HELD
MY HAND IN THE ER
by Dorsía Smith Silva
I suppose I should thank you for holding my hand,
while I was in the ER.
We both were bleeding: me from a miscarriage and you from cancer.
You told me not to cry, to save my tears
for something in life really worth grieving.
In this room, I understand your words.
What I feel now is the deep weight of this repeated cycle:
twisted uterus, shots, prayers, tests, pregnancy, miscarriage.
I always believe that I can save the child in time.
And for that instant, I forget about the cruel demands of my body
and think that this is something that I can control.
And then the bleeding comes, another loss scarring over my life.
Do you understand?
My body is a map of grief.
Dorsía Smith Silva is an Associate Professor of English at the
University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras. Her poems have been
published in Bright Sleep Magazine, POUi: Cave Hill
Journal of Creative Writing, Adanna, Rigorous, Shot Glass
Journal, Tonguas, and the anthology Mothers and Daughters,
a collection of academic and creative writing published by
Demeter Press in 2017.
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Apple Valley Review:
A Journal of Contemporary
Volume 13, Number 2
Copyright © 2018
by Leah Browning, Editor.
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Valley Review are retained
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