The Length of the Court

The Giant She Was by Barbara Carter

The Giant She Was by Barbara Carter

In the twisted sheet hours
I unmuffled my head
to decipher my son’s sleep talk
knees banging against his wall          uuugh (a grinding growl)

The doctor says I take notes
at every appointment
just like my mother,          maaaaaaa
a lurching as she is lost
to me, a longing like when my son
said Mama, his first word          maaaamaaaaa
when his stroller couldn’t fit
in my bathroom stall

Three days ago
I crafted a short letter
about my daughter’s health
enclosed a two page report
sealed the envelope and in cursive          fuuuuck
wrote a name

The letter passed from the palm of my hand
to my son’s and then to his father’s
at the basketball game
where my daughter ran
the length of the court
between her two parents
and poured water
from the bottle in my hand
down her throat

I saw him sink
the unopened envelope
into the recycling bin          Yuh! (with an intake of air)
as if I was sucking the words back

The other team
a humiliating

About Rose Adams

Rose Adams is a visual artist, educator and poet who teaches in the Foundation Department of NSCAD University in Halifax. Her 25-year visual art retrospective, “Birds, Bones and Brains,” was exhibited at Saint Mary’s University Art Gallery from January-March, 2014. Her poems have been published in numerous journals including Grain, Prism International, and the Antigonish Review. Rose lives in Dartmouth with her two teenage children, her dog, and her parrot.

About Barbara Carter

Barbara Carter was born in Bridgewater, Nova Scotia. In 1988, she had her first solo show at the former Black Duck Gallery in Lunenburg, NS. Since then her work has been featured in many solo and group shows, and is now displayed in many collections, including the Nova Scotia Art Bank. Her piece “Waiting Mothers” can be viewed outside the cafeteria at The Grace Maternity Hospital in Halifax. Barbara spent over ten years instructing children and adult art classes. Her work began as black, white, and gray hand-stitched appliqued fabric, and has evolved into colourful mixed media. Carter is a self-taught artist who follows her inner voice, gut, and heart. Please see Barbara's website for examples of her art.

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