Robbi Nester and Katie Helms

My Body Becomes the World
By Robbi Nester


Roan Mountain
By Katie Helms
Inspiration piece


For years, I have lived in this body,


worked it, let it take me wherever it would go,


walking the city streets for miles.


I never  had to think about what lay under


the surface, where the lungs rise and fall,


twin islands in  the arteries’  flow.


Just yesterday,  with other women


wondering about the world


inside they could not see,


I studied the pelvis,  tipped


slightly forward like a leaky pot.


The uterus and vulva nest within,


neat as a  matryoshka. In the back,


a triangular frill of bone


delicate as hand-made lace


anchors it all to the spine.


Today I am examining a watercolor landscape:


layered hills, moving toward summer sea swells,


translucent greens and blues laid lightly


like a veil, the mist that rises over the hills


in early light.  But as I look,


the hills become a cross section


of flesh on a tinted slide.


Inside or outside, from


the window or in


the microscope’s bright


arc, inside and out


seem just alike, subject


to tides and the vagaries of weather.