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A Sentence About a Sentence I Love, by Paula Bomer

 

everything down
hardens I press with horrible joy down
my back cracks like a wrist
shame I am voiding oh behind it is too late

hide me forever I work thrust I must free
now I all muscles & bones concentrate
what is living from dying?

from John Berryman’s “Homage to Mistress Bradstreet”

 

This sentence is part of a longer passage that I quote in the epigraph to my unpublished novel, Nine Months, because I think it so wonderfully captures the intensity, beauty, rhythm and horror that is the miracle called childbirth.

 

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