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on my mothers body
are written stories.
the moment of her
from her mother
a marker of independence
and connection
rests proud in the middle of her waist
like a thumb print
pressed into a stomach
that will one day
be my first home.
below lies the line
that my departure left
a scar marking
our bodies’ divorce.

the making of two from one.
three generations of women
inscribed on one body
as in generations before.
an ancient storytelling
that predates my literacy
and that of my grandmother
women writing their existence
leaving a trace
a mark
using flesh for paper
and pain for ink
every generation anew
showing their presence
glaring past those
who tried to silence them
centuries of female bodies
passing on the ancient truth
of female presences.

Anna Eleanor Kirchhofer

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