My daughter was understood.

She wasn’t a flower or a bee

or tropical storm or anything

else you can name and study

as a science. She had anatomy

but it wasn’t textbook like they

want you to believe. There wasn’t

a season for her. A chart to track her.

A price for the color of her hair.

She wasn’t a gift.

I couldn’t plant her in the soft soil,

give her roots or extract from her

all the sweet that pleased me.

Nor could I break apart the trees

or build a shelter to protect myself

from the violent adoration she spun

in my chest the moment I conceived her.

There is no wood strong enough.

No house pretty enough.

My daughter was understood

but not because numbers named her.

They only measured the length

of her soft, padded feet, her cherub legs,

how tall she could have grown.

MEGHAN BLISS is a freelance writer from Coastal NC. Her poetry and nonfiction have been published in Rust+Moth, Naugatuck River Review, A Poetry Congeries, and Mary Jane’s Farm, among others. Her chapbook, The Little Universe, was published in 2015 by dancing girl press. She is currently at work on her first novel. You can find more of her writing here.