I Try to Hold the Sun & Moon

by Emily Lowe

When my sister smiles her teeth are little suns
that is to say they are each a dying star.
My mother loved us both, I know. But she loved me
easy & she loved my sister hard. My sister
looks for love in boys & girls, in apartments
& car payments, on the internet & in past lives.
She tells me period sex is best because it eases the cramps
but I can’t help but cramp when she curls up into me,
me knowing this soft touch is a wisp
before daybreak before day breaks her down again
another day with unpaid taxes, unpaid rent, a baby boy
with no daddy. My sister has apricot hair so sweet & rare
& her son does too. Her skin is made of cratered
moons & I wonder if she was made for another
world. My arms are not strong enough to carry her
but they can sweep the scattered light she leaves
& shake it out into the night.

Emily Lowe is a North Carolina based writer who explores questions of family, identity, and mental illness through poetry and prose. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in HobartRiver Teeth, and Arc Poetry Magazine.

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