Bean Babies - Bailey Schaumburg
our shabby, untamed, jetlagged minds
like that time we signed up for anatomy class
knowing we’d have to dissect cats
and when it was time to dissect cats
we didn’t want to.
thought about skipping--
got too high
forgot about skipping--
lost our minds
we were stoned coroners, scalpels in hand
“one of them was pregnant,” our teacher said
i crossed my fingers behind my back
then sliced organs one by one
until, in the sac, they were
cuddling lima beans.
i removed my gloves and scooped them out
used my left pinky to press tiny chests
in and out and in out
begged their bean-root lungs to gasp
please, please, before anyone sees but
you saw you took them
you tossed them around like hacky sacks
then threw them in the discard pile.
i wanted to find them put them back
in the warm sac and sew her up--
their unbelievable little faces and ears.
I loved this poem. Recently I've been getting back into poetry. I love the brevity while still being able to say so much. That's pretty much my biggest dilemma in my own writing. I love the surface story of the dissection of the cat and finding the dead kittens. But I also love how she tied in the subliminal story of her relationship with someone. I don't know much about the relationship but I don't feel I need to because of how she describes the dead kittens, all shriveled and eventually thrown away. I thought it was interesting that it was the second person who tossed the kittens around like hacky sacks. So, naturally, I assumed it was this person who ruined the relationship. I love how she coerced the reader (me) into siding with her. It felt very sympathetic. Which is what I aim to accomplish in the senior show piece I'm working on. I want my character to seem sympathetic to the audience; to be real and genuine. So that I can manipulate emotion in order to break it and show the true colors of my character. He's a psychopath but no one will be convinced that he's good if he isn't sympathetic at first.
Schaumburg, Bailey. “Bean Babies.” Glyph. 25 (2013): 163-164. Print. 17 October 2016.