I’m told memory is protein under fascia.
A strand in mind, not exclusively my own.
Photo of me, age six, on a boat at Niagara.
Photo of a grandparent fleeing war by ship.
Their hunger is my hunger.
I want to store-up the needful things,
leave home almost empty-handed, to start again.
I could chart generations of troubles,
but what if the child lost by my great-grandmother
is the faith that holds me up.
All our ebullient cells and twisted tendrils.
And still, sun on cedar,
a palm on my belly, the heritable quality
of a mind about to change.

Deborah Kelly is from Minneapolis and Chicago, but the high deserts and mountains of The West kept calling. She now lives Boulder, Colorado. There and (frequently) on the road, Deborah writes as way of life and a practice. Her poems can be found in several journals in the US and abroad.