Poetry Front Page

Save Her

Have you ever looked 
so closely at a child’s face 
that you could see God?
	Victoria Chang, Obit

what if I told you 
that I am wandering 
in the wasteland 
of a war-torn country, 
desperate to defend
my young daughter?
or what if I told you
that my daughter is 
the war-torn country,
and this is America,
this is America and 
we are in a hospital 
room for those who 
want to be protected
from themselves?
and what if in order to 
keep the war-torn country
on the map I have to
convince you 
it needs saving?

maybe where we are,
the name of the country,
which war, 
whose daughter,
      --doesn’t matter.  
listen to the long gone
and the newly dead,
their elegy 
is short and sweet
and pleads with us
in every language:

       save her 
       save her 	

is that a clock ticking
in the corner
or is it a bomb?
you should know
that a mother determined 
to keep her child alive
can turn anything 
into a weapon:
a clock,
a daisy,
a prayer,
herself.

what if I told you 
that my suffering child
is the Messiah?  
that unless she 
         survives 

in this world, unless she makes it,

     you 

will never be safe      

from me?

Image by Artur Aldyrkhanov

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Filed under: Poetry Front Page

by

Joan Kwon Glass, author of “How to Make Pancakes For a Dead Boy” (Harbor Editions, 2022,) was a finalist for the 2021 Subnivean Award, a finalist for the 2021 Lumiere Review Writing Contest & serves as Poet Laureate (2021-2025) for the city of Milford, CT. She is a biracial Korean American who holds a B.A. & M.A.T. from Smith College, is Poetry Co-Editor for West Trestle Review & Poetry Reader for Rogue Agent. Her poems have recently been published or are forthcoming in Kissing Dynamite, the Subnivean, trampset, Rust & Moth, Rattle, Mom Egg, SWWIM, Honey Literary, Lumiere Review, Lantern Review, Literary Mama, Barnstorm & others. Since 2018, Joan has been nominated four times for the Pushcart Prize. She tweets @joanpglass & you may read her previously published work at www.joankwonglass.com.