Inside the dark, hot potbelly

of my uncomfortable mother,


I stirred in pink au jus. In salty

amnio, I grew round, delicious


and thick. My silky ears pickled.

My knuckles and cloven hooves


prickled with finicky hungers.

All new senses of me glorious


tongues budding and licking.

I crackled to life and I kicked her


beneath the floating ribs: Eat,

eat, Woman! Eat! But she halved


grapefruits. She hard boiled eggs.

She sipped thin, bitter black coffee


with no sweet cream. Pained

by the weight of me, she signed


her pregnancy photos in shame.

“Don’t I look terrible?” she asked


the world. She decided early on

to name me, Fat—an inside joke


between her and my father.

And he agreed.


Tammy Robacker is a Hedgebrook writer-in-residence. She won the 2015 Keystone Chapbook Prize for her manuscript, 'R'. Her second poetry book Villain Songs is forthcoming with ELJ Publications in 2016. Tammy published her first collection of poetry, The Vicissitudes, in 2009 (Pearle Publications). Tammy's poetry has appeared in Menacing Hedge, Chiron Review, VoiceCatcher, Duende, So to Speak, Crab Creek Review, WomenArts, and Up the Staircase Quarterly. Currently enrolled in the Rainier Writing Workshop MFA program in Creative Writing at Pacific Lutheran University, Tammy lives in Oregon with her fiance. www.tammyrobacker.com