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now, with a son

Sam Kats

Mother by Ronni Ochoa

now, with a son

by Sam Kats


Mama lays in a white hospital bed.

A crowded room of relatives push against one another,

waiting for baby girl’s head to move.

Ogling at her soft skin and pink lips,

caressing her feminine cheeks.

Grandma turns on the DSLR

and snaps a photo to remember.

It sits tucked into the pocket of a

pale pink baby book.

The bindings are worn in and

the plastic inside is covered in smudge marks.


She races across a narrow hallway,

the blue tulle in her dress scrunched

in shaking fists.

Soppy tears stain her dirty cheeks

and she wipes them off in between hard exhales.

She doesn’t mention how the dress prickles against her legs

or that long hair weighs down her head.

She just cuts big chunks of it

off behind the couch a few months later.

It turns into jagged lines and

her dresses mend into dirty jeans.


Mama shakes in his arms.

He whispers,

“Mama, it’s okay, I’m here,”

as she lays on his flat chest.

He knows it’s because of him,

because of whom he has become,

but he is not sorry.

"Five years of grief looks like it could heal,// but there’s no amount of time that// will replace a daughter."

Five years of grief looks like it could heal,

but there’s no amount of time that

will replace a daughter.

Still, life must go on,


with a son.


About the Writer...

Sam Kats is a 17-year-old writer from Jacksonville, Florida. He is a junior at Douglas Anderson School of the Arts and enjoys realistic fiction.

About the Artist...

Ronni Ochoa is an art major at Savannah Arts Academy. They enjoy working with charcoal as well as digital painting.

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