Author: Mom Egg Review

Review by Emily Webber If you’ve ever seen shed snakeskin, you’ll know it has intricate texture and patterns, the way the light catches it can make it seem otherworldly. Some see snakes as a bad omen, but the snake shedding its skin indicates transformation and rebirth. Kristine Langley Mahler’s memoir, A Calendar is a Snakeskin, documents the year she turns thirty-eight, during the lockdown of the pandemic, a time of significant global upheaval. She examines how her world is shifting—the demands of being a mother, what home means, her relationship with her siblings and her work, and old…

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Ages/Stages: MER Online Folio of Poetry, Creative Prose, and Visual Art In this themed folio, “Ages/Stages,” we took a well-used trope of child development and broadened the category to include the ages and stages of the mother as well as the child. Can one assume generalities for developmental milestones, or is each an individual? How do you deal with expectations of other individuals and institutions? How do cultural requirements influence ages and stages? What are the parents’ own feelings and experiences of aging, both in their bodies and in their roles? Even the Earth has had “ages and stages,”…

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Caroline Beasley-Baker dementia is a ruthless god. my mother says — i wuv you — but can she mean it? i’m uncertain the sentiment is meant for me. the infantilism of the ‘wuv’ a clue — a mis- direction — lacuna? so many painful questions in a foreign place. is the dementing a mechanical self-betrayal? and helpless — is the persona a witness to its own demise? and for me — do my questions elucidate or stand in-stead/in-the-way of empathy? of love? but then mother says: the sky is so blue — the most perfect small cloud rests on…

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E.J. Antonio Geography of the changing body: File cabinets & mirrors 2016 1/ I’ve stopped looking for myself in the mirror. The face of the parent I’ve become to the parents I have startles. The child I was pushes inward becomes invisible. No! I’m still in here! They’re still there! 2/ I’ve cleared out years of hoard from the file cabinet & decades of keepsakes fell from between the papers: three funny office signs bought from Woolworth’s; Woolworth’s where anything of necessity & dreams could be found. The tag shows I paid $1.29 for each sign: the best man…

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Ellen Devlin The Slowdown They watch my slow tucking of napkins under the left sides of plates. They reach around me to get the coffee canister, yank open and slam-close drawers looking for teaspoons, Splenda, the goddamn coffee filters. They don’t have all day! People hustle around me on busy sidewalks       subway stairs. I take too long with the strawberries. Studied a spider this morning—only as big as four sesame seeds with legs like a baby’s eyelashes—slow-climbing up the steamy wall of a bathroom. Climb, slip, climb. After a while I stopped telling myself stories about her search…

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Sharon Dolin I Am Losing My Mirrors I am losing my mirrors, I thought, as one more silver spangle, size of my pinky tip, drops from the gauzy blouse’s hem. I am losing my mirrors, those who loved me from birth, now two remain, sister and aunt. Oh let me hold on to my mirrors let me glue my mother’s bright blue eyes, my father’s laughter, to a place where they never fall off. Sharon Dolin is the author of seven books of poetry, most recently Imperfect Present (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2022). Her book of translations…

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Laura Rock Gaughan Murmurations for a Grown Daughter Driving my daughter to the airport, in the sacred space of our car, we’re flying past multi-lane threats— all the normal hazards—when the birds swoop down shadowing our way. Black rain if raindrops could rise after falling, a twisting blanket if blankets unwove themselves in the air. The transformed sky sends us sideways. I course-correct, pull at the wheel to achieve lift-off as if I were the pilot of the flight I’m racing to make. Guiding our capsule up, up to join the great murmuring and leave this world of…

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Terrie Joplin Last Wishes 1. I know when my mom said, It’s time, my dad and sister drove her to the hospital to die that night— returning home, drinking coffee, waiting for the doctor’s call—just as she wanted, the lymphoma having burst her body— she, alone behind a closed door, her ashes sprinkled to green a cloistered space, stroke its geraniums, roses, a gathering of bees. 2. I know that after hers, my dad said, No chemo— just knives—and his water wing in the warm ocean could buoy the missing lung quarter but not breathe, and one kidney…

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Eve Packer phases/stages: Cycles of the Moon phase 1: new overheard: she’s sweet too bad she isn’t prettier phase 2: waxing crescent: the weapons h.s. sophomore: i remember thinking as i look in the orchard street store mirror to buy my first fitted bathing suit those legs are weapons college sophomore: i remember thinking as i look in the summer camp mirror: that face is worth a kings ransom i remember thinking this can’t be, is not the me who is me semi-phase 2: first quarter post-grad back in the u.s.a.: i am wearing my blue & white…

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Puma Perl Too Old to Live Pulling into the 11th Street Garage, Annie’s 1999 Honda SUV suddenly rolled back She pulled the emergency brake, nobody hurt Girls in street turned around and glared at her You’re too old to live one shouted over her shoulder Too old to live? Annie repeated softly and dangerously and jumped out in fighting stance, green hat, black leggings, Docs, granny shades, and a brand-new tattoo on her wrist that said So What – I’m too old to live? she yelled, Come back here and kill me. Try it. You think I’m too…

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