My Seaborgium sings songs of loss and growth, motherhood and viscera, elements and experience, with love and relatable grace.
“I'll tell you the story,” the opening poem coos, “of how / I rolled around in a mail truck full of other / people's letters, I was that happy / to be your mother.” This speaker guides us into her expectant waiting, calling on insight from what she knows of her parents, what she thought she knew about her body, fables and gods. She asks all of these potential sources of wisdom to attend to her as forty weeks go by and she tries to detach because “it makes birth manageable,” even as she tests her nipples “to see if they lift / away from the breast” while “standing on a mountain / and trying to spot a suitcase on the ground below.” My Seaborgium travels toward motherhood from before, during, and after the experiences of pregnancy and birth, as the speaker imagines the thickening of her infant’s fur and readies “for the bloody show.” The only wisdom she gleans from her passage is the live and atomic feeling that arrives for a child whom she tells to “be your element’s namesake / and alive, know it. My Seaborgium.” This is a book fat with heavy and wild love.
Named a 2015 Best New Poet, Alicia Rebecca Myers is multiply published in prominent journals and magazines and has been the recipient of a Kimmel Harding Nelson Center for the Arts residency.
“The poems of My Seaborgium utilize metaphor in an attempt to account for the beauty that emerges from our moments of greatest grief. . . . Even through the pain, Myers’s speaker struggles to pay attention, to unfold that pain in ways that feel particular and personal.”
--Kiki Petrosino, author of Hymn for the Black Terrific