A New Daughter

I buckle a wide-eyed baby
fresh from her parents’ row with police
into a car seat.

She files away their memory
into a place
so hard to reach:

their fist fights,
and drunken arrests.

Her pierced and infected ears
tiny versions
of Jesus’ hands.

We offer formula,
mashed peaches,
and clean bedding.

She blends in
with all the survival tendencies
an eight-month-old
can muster.

She loves attention.
She’s crippled emotionally
by the sight of food.

I wonder whether
that growing hunger
can ever be filled.

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