Green Hills Literary Lantern




In biology, I dissected

a fetal pig;

lifted it out of the bucket

of formaldehyde,

my hands wet, as though

I had just guided it

from its mother’s womb.

I felt the weight

of its stillborn life

as I held one hand

under its head, the other

cradling the curled legs.

it was quiet and unmoving,

the eyes squinted shut,

and mouth frozen open

as if trying to suckle

the air.


I laid it down carefully

and once the weight of it

was gone from my arms,

I forgot that I

could have been laying it

at its mother's teats,

and sliced

its belly open,

like the hard surface

of a pomegranate.


Allison P. Brown is currently working on a Masters in Fine Arts in Boston, MA.  Her poetry has also appeared in Books & Culture.