Tayve Neese

Reviving the Sow

For love of child, the goddess turned herself sow having many teats
engorged with milk, but the people saw her caked in earth, thought her
unclean and lowly.

What your snout uncovers—loam,
rancid acorns, grubs—
let their scent settle in the skin
between our fingers.

Your hooves leave hieroglyphs.
Your  legs turned mud and crust
ache as they weave
through thickets of birch,
your bristle catching on low thorns.
The heat of your haunches melts ice
for want of hearing the syllables
of your name elevated
above truffle and root.

When you slow, recline into fleshy horizon,
smell it is time to feed our memory
hoping we will turn a soiled thing holy,
it is your teats, arc of your belly,
your bold milk to open our eyes and throats.