You Had a Sibling, Briefly

poetry 0
Shannon Elizabeth Hardwick
Your mother wanted to give you an origin story of which to be proud,
 
not the embarrassment of finding out she was pregnant while working 
the land records of the courthouse & 
	++when your father said he was at the rig, 
		++++he was lying. To tell the truth,

your mother wanted you to believe 
 
he was in his right mind when she took away his gun,
that she didn’t want to (take away the gun)
	++(or) get rid of the baby. It wasn’t you. 
					+++++++++++She didn’t want to tell you 

it might as well have been.

Shannon Elizabeth Hardwick’s work has appeared or is forthcoming in Gulf Coast, The Texas Observer, The Missouri Review, Four Way Review, Harpur Palate, and Passages North, among others. Hardwick serves as the poetry editor for The Boiler Journal.