Breathing in

The small animal laps at your eyes.
Quickly it drinks in deep gulps
from the gulf of your womb.

With pale paws it threads on your limbs,
a trembling rules over your belabored breathing.
Its mouth is small, soft to the touch,
built stitch after stitch, needle and thread.
The veins on your pulses twitch at its purring.

Fear, white and soft, breathes in from your mouth.

Federica Santini lives in Atlanta, Georgia, USA. A literary critic, poet, and translator, her work has appeared in over forty journals and volumes in North America and Europe, including Autografo, The Ocotillo Review, JIT, il verri, and Snapdragon among others.