and other times
I call you the girl with many names
In the early moments,
I felt as if I could still touch you
even as that which had already touched the insides
of your eyes became more visible to the rest of us
First there was the stitching
(a spider consuming an insect)
then the black patch—
Was it your right eye?
With the center of your eye opened up, I felt as
if I could reach in and pull it out, the flattened mass
of iron and thread that made your
mouth like that of
quiet and consuming
the flowerless plants and dew of
not belonging to her
I hoped for 10 years because I read about
people who made it that long (one person 23 years),
enough time for me to marry and know the
adult version of you
You were there for the marriage, but
four years later,
I wasn’t there when it happened—
Would you have heard me whispering
through the water and cool season grass?
Would you have felt me in the end, willing
you to be bodied, lifting you up out of your
own faulty limbs and veins?
Kristin LaFollette (she/her) is a writer, artist, and photographer and is the author of the chapbook, Body Parts (GFT Press, 2018). She is a professor at the University of Southern Indiana and serves as the Art Editor at Mud Season Review. You can visit her on Twitter at @k_lafollette03 or on her website at kristinlafollette.com.