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Swallow

I am thankful to not be a fish
          again in this life.

When I see a restaurant tank
my jaws swell in remembrance
gulp ice water like air

It could be worse, my dear
my mother’s port-wine birthmark
ripples around her neck
as she waves her fork
She does not eat beef.

My daughter is inside me,
the size of a peach.
At night we dream of falling.

It is not to be feared
because her wings
beat us aloft, one-two
as we step down from the sky.

Was I delicious,
she asks as we pluck
          cloves from her hair and skin.

Very.

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Hal Y. Zhang

Hal Y. Zhang writes science, fiction, and science fiction, in no particular order. She has a language-and-loss chapbook Amnesia with Newfound, and a women-with-sharp-things collection Goddess Bandit of the Thousand Arms with Aqueduct Press.

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