Grandchild


You’re the size of a thumbprint
and just as singular. Heartbeat,
a grain of pollen bold enough to be
heard chugging through an ocean
of sound waves. Quadrants merge—
ancestries of strangers making
acquaintances in the shiny rooms
of your cells. Imagine how small
we all are. Your histories, chirping
flocks magnetized, whirling into form—
murmurations. Those in the know will
tell you during the ultrasound: even now,
everything is growing by divisions.
We await your name & choose yours for us.
Your sex, an ink blot of hormone we try
to interpret through a ring twirling on
a thread over the belly, dilations in the eye.
I dream of you in nested verse, tiny rocking
seahorse: equal parts water and earth,
a chipper’s worth of sift and whittle. With-
out a hint of lullaby: zygote, embryo, fetus,
the star gazers remark, mapping you out
in constellations and small currents.
Months from now, your first roundhouse
of breath will be a monument to what
has grown in all of us who wait for you.

Laura Sobbott Ross

About the poet: Laura Sobbott Ross has worked as a teacher and a writing coach for Lake County Schools and was named as Lake County’s first poet laureate. Her poetry appears in many journals, including Blackbird, Florida Review, and 32 Poems. She was a finalist for the Art & Letters Poetry Prize and won the Southern Humanities Auburn Witness Poetry Prize. Her poetry chapbooks are A Tiny Hunger and My Mississippi. A third book, The Graffiti of Pompeii, was released in December 2018.