An empty vase has been placed near the sink.
An elongated bottle cut from bright cobalt glass,
slender neck stretched four or five inches high. It’s my
distraction when the clamp’s cold pinch starts to pull
and turn my stomach. I did not wish for this intimacy
with fear. My doctor’s fingers caressing a cervix
that won’t open, as if it knows how much power is placed
in keeping closed, in staying in control. As the spasms
crack my abdomen, smelling salts are placed on my chest.
I have never changed the contours of my body on behalf
of what someone else could take from it. To keep from
fainting, I exhale in counts of four. The world is over-
populated anyhow, I tell myself, and someone chose
not to fill the blue bottle with flowers, to let it just take
up its own space.
Emily Paige Wilson is an English adjunct instructor at Craven Community College. She received her MFA from UNCW, where she served as the Kert Green fellow. Her work has appeared in The Adroit Journal, Hayden’s Ferry Review, PANK, The Raleigh Review, and Thrush, among others. The recipient of the 2012 Emma Howell Memorial Prize, she has twice been nominated for Best New Poets. She rules her life like a fine skylark and is working on her crow pose.