"The Rebirth of Rivers" - Brittany Bavery


The lines etched into
transparent skin,
a stomach,
lungs that could fit in my palm.
I could see
                              where
your heart was beating,
150 times per minute.
I saw rivers flowing
through a cord.
Rivers sharing blood.
Rivers filling with my love.
                              Do
all people start out like rivers?
                              You
know what I thought of?
How can your eyes
begin a new life inside of me,
while I watch them lower her
into the ground
because she’s gone
and she had to
                              go,
though no one
knows why?
I thought of family.
Rivers of promise.
Rivers that run deep enough
to drown in.
Rivers that break
calm waters
                              when
you least expect
them to.
Rivers of tears
flowed out of my worry
that maybe
I couldn’t keep
                              you
if there are rivers
with currents strong enough
to keep her.
No puedo olvidar su sonrisa,
her mother said,
sobbing into a handkerchief.
And I wondered
if I could forget
that first heartbeat,
your eyes
that have yet to see,
if you were to suddenly
                              disappear.


Brittany Bavery is a junior at UW-Madison in the undergraduate English: Creative Writing department. Besides writing, her life is dedicated to her fiancé, Jordan, and one-year-old son, Phoenix.