Roots

Poetry by Taylor Frost
Issue 27 • May 2015

My great-grandma, wine coated words, speaking to me in hymns.
My great-grandma, myths woven into quilts, motherhood sealed into mason jars,
two hands, child, two hands.

My grandma, prayers escaping thin red lips, swallowing vinegar and spitting gospel.
My grandma, two bare feet pounding music into a concrete floor,
dance with me, baby, dance.

My papa, shotgun shells like quarters in his pocket, turning his face to the sky.
My papa, two shots of Evan Williams, buzzing, tobacco pressed against a bee sting,
there's a storm coming, my girl, quite a storm.

My momma, southern suns rising from her tongue, moving mountains with clenched teeth.
My momma, honeysuckle and bourbon on her breath, singing me to sleep,
close your eyes, my darling girl, there's much to see.

My own voice, thick with grief and honey, howling at the moon, calling for my lost daughter,
speaking in maps landmarked by pine trees and Virginia constellations,
come home, baby, come back to me.

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