Like hope in Pandora’s box,
I wondered if I was spared or
punished by it.

See three smiling cousins,
around age eight,
spattered with mud, after
an afternoon spent playing
in the sodden, low spot in the yard

where the rain collected.

We dashed high-legged, splashing;
then lurked low
like gators, skin goose-pimpled.

Chris had been shy to take off his shirt.
I held a hand in front of my round belly.
Jennifer, hair plastered down,
already a head taller.

I fill in what’s missing,
wondering if even then,
the seeds were sown for
all the wrong to come.

Amanda Graham

Amanda Graham

Editor at NY Literary Magazine
Amanda holds an M.A. in History. She loves well-written poetry and romance novels. Amanda has 2 cats and a 3-year-old son.
Amanda Graham