And another of my mother’s lies was the prize
dug from the heart of the artichoke.
And the heart of the artichoke was a dilated cervix.
And the dilated cervix was a single choke-fringed eye.
The eye was the stigma
of the plant protected by thorny leaves and the stamen.
I scraped the meaty pith
at the torn-off tips with my milk teeth to reach the heart.
She told me to dip the meat of the leaves in butter: warm, silken.
She said eat all the way to the inside: there was a prize in the heart of the artichoke.
But it was soft, the heart, and I imagined
a small plastic baby doll, tiny as my own girl thumb
on the blue-green velvet heart.