On Emotion

It was inside, gathering heat in her blood, slowly killing her.
No one said a word.
And this grew her fury further, grieved her immeasurably.
What did it look like.
A knot, or a slag of granite.
I imagined another brother, unborn for he was only a knot.
How my granite brother would never leave her.
I grew up in her abject sadness, which soon became our speaking.
And then I left.
Smaller, smaller, he was her favorite.
Jays nag the first light.
And now I am awake before dawn hoping today is a day when I won’t have to say anything.
And then I.
To me, it was unintelligible.
I could see through her skin, see my brother not growing inside her.
Would he ever come outside.
The raging jays, the squawking catastrophe.
I wanted to know.
What is the difference between a son and a daughter,  I wanted to know.
That is private.
That was her answer.

From Some Say the Lark (Alice James Books, 2017). Copyright © 2017 by Jennifer Chang. Used with permission of The Permissions Company, Inc., on behalf of Alice James Books, www.alicejamesbooks.org.