O granny panty!
O torn lace that marked her for this sacred calling!
O elastic worn gentle, forgive the sin of my bloating!
Hail freedom from fear of stains!
Hail peace in the face of blood!
I honor the viscera wrung from my disappointed womb
I honor her hospitality for a guest who never arrived
I honor even the drops that escape their vessel,
the Madonna of humble cotton cradles them, so long as they are small.
They say Adonis (and later Christ) bled onto anemone–
turning the petals red too.
I read the shapes like tea leaves: I look close and see laundry in my future
I perform the familiar ritual, the changing of the guard.
I admire the fresh, new, bright red jewel
on the garment between my legs
right where its ghost will be next month.
Another tree ring joins old stains oxidized
I read their shapes like tea leaves:
one wide pattern recalls a journey through denim
like a river overrunning her banks to the shore of others’ view,
another small rounded symbol echoes the fetal position
that I crouched in to weather the cries of my abdomen.
I look close and see laundry in my future.
I bow to pull them back up.
Tonight, I will wash the panty by hand,
I will hang it to dry in the shower,
and I will put on another holey pair.
EmJo Chaney (she/they) is some white bitch - middle age middle class middle child from the middle west - she has been writing poetry for an amount of time - she's on various social mediums but please leave her be - support her by trusting your instincts and doing the dishes.