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Then I made love to the prophetess, and she conceived and gave birth to a son. — Isaiah 8:3

His warm, coal-scarred lips graze
my breasts but are not coarse.
He is tender, as his tongue’s lavish words
play on the page of my bright-bronze
skin, translating well to my whole,
uncloaked body. He is the help of Adonai,
a comfort, strong Cedar who holds me,
who, one day years from now, will be hewn
in half when Manasseh grows weary of him
and his dire predictions. (I saw that clearly
long ago, but weep no more.) As a woman
with child draws near to birth,
my loins begin to shudder: Our son
will be my prophecy, my sign, my wonder.

Photo by Tim Wildsmith on Unsplash

Julie L. Moore

A Best of the Net and eight-time Pushcart Prize nominee, Julie L. Moore is the author of four poetry collections, including, most recently, Full Worm Moon, which won a 2018 Woodrow Hall Top Shelf Award and received honorable mention for the Conference on Christianity and Literature's 2018 Book of the Year Award. Recent poetry has appeared in African American Review, Image, Quartet, Sojourners, SWWIM, Thimble, and Verse Daily. Learn more about her work at