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She buys me for my birth canal
but beats me for the birth.
I despise her.
And beneath her fist,
I become the broken earth.

When I spring towards the water,
son in womb, all that’s left to wander,
I swallow the sand to Shur,
until the LORD comes to assure me
that my descendants will be more numerous
than that which I shovel down my throat.

So, I spit out gravel, jaw slack, watching
divinity rage over my misery
my God is a consuming fire
to consume that which consumes me
to call forth a son from my womb
lift me to ride on a wild donkey in the wilderness;
straddling hostility and honor,
he is born.

Call him Ishmael.

I am the lost woman, and You are the God who sees me.

Photo by Chirag Nayak on Unsplash

Michelle Chin

Michelle E. Chin is a Boston-based writer. She holds a BA in English/Creative Writing and French from Wellesley College, and she is currently working on a new adult novel. Her writing has appeared in Mass Poetry and (in)courage.