Various and Sundry Poetry

only once

She is whole only once, before birth.
After that it's one mess after another,
sometimes minor, sometimes not, and isn't that
the most marvelous thing, how we are broken by birth,
broken into birth, and how if we remembered this,
we would never try to whole ourselves again.
The sunset is broken by horizon line. The air
is broken by a pass of birds. The river is broken
by bedrock. And so, too, is she broken. By breath,
by story, by circumstance, by chance, by choice.
She was intended as a flexible thing, free
of sharp corners and hard angles. She forgets this,
barreling through her day as if in combat with the world.
There is no way to win the war.
There is no war.