The Daily Work of Caretaking and Witness Part V. by Lena Ziegler

On the day I was born, I sprouted seed in a bed of magma, tore through bedrock and ascended, blistered, through the ocean floor, floated weightless to the top, and ambled into being.

Years later, miles away, I was pushed through floorboards, unfurled through a spool of carpet fiber, and resurrected a pulsing wound, naming each vibration a miracle.

Then the light came.

As injection of memory, as explanation for hollowness, as introduction to knowing: the hole in my center sensory.

Perhaps for some such nakedness is a futile, empty excuse for seeking cover everywhere it can’t be found: under ancient footprints, and blank-faced promises, and mirror illusions of tenderness, and the fourth wall hanging above, never broken. But I spoke to the mother and this is what she told me:

For you are young; this is why it hurts.

You are young and the sum of: everything.

You are young; this is why you’ve stopped asking questions.

You are young; this is why you question everything.

You are young; this is how the world has carved its roads through you.

You are young; this is why your fire is not gentle.

You are young; this is why your light dies in shadows and is reborn, barefoot in

rain-soaked mosses.

You are young and this living makes you younger.

Lena Ziegler – Is a writer of fiction, nonfiction, and the occasional uncomfortable poem. She is currently pursuing her MFA in Creative Writing at Western Kentucky University and will be joining the Ph.D. program in Rhetoric and Writing at Bowling Green State University this fall. Her work has been published in Red Earth Review, Miracle Monocle, Harpoon Review, The Fem Lit Magazine and others.

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