T.G.I.F: My body was an ark once. And you ask, would it still float?

Post title from: Julia Kolchinsky Dasbach, “Other women don’t tell you,” published in Muzzle. Photo by Xenie Zasetskaya (via See More)


  1. Love post title. And sure hope it still floats.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I find that photo disturbing. However, I’ve seen some beautiful videos she has compiled (Vimeo).

    Title was a promise not held by the pic. I expected something sublime, touching and searched for the whole poem. Again, it’s not what one would expect from that glorious line, the two sentences.

    Here goes:
    Other women don’t tell you
    about the hair, how it falls out, webs
    between your fingers and streams
    in the shower and clumps on your pillow
    and on the floor and in the hands of one
    who still loves you. They say it’ll grow back.
    Thicker even. But you don’t believe them.
    They’ve lied before. And they don’t tell you
    about the split, how you can fit
    a fist between your left and right sides.
    You can work to make it narrower, they say,
    build back the muscles in your abdomen
    and pelvic floor. It just takes time.
    You can get it all back, they say, but you know
    that is not the point. And you knew you’d be tired,
    that the body can only keep up for so long.
    They warned you days would be long but years
    would fly and again, they were wrong,
    because everything is flying and the rain
    is coming down the way July had never known it.
    And you think, my body was an ark once.
    And you ask, would it still float? And in days,
    your son will have breathed air as long as water.
    And maybe Noah was a woman too.
    They never told you this. But the rain
    is coming and you are holding
    a wad of your own hair in one hand
    as your son’s head rests along the other.
    And you think, they never told you
    any of this. How your hands
    would never keep up.
    (by Julia Kolchinsky Dasbach)

    Liked by 3 people

  3. We cared for our parents in our home, one by one as they became incapacitated by dementia, RA and one who just wore out. I was alone with them while my husband was gone the requisite ten hours a day, making our living but, when he was home he helped me as much as he could but, there’s not a lot a man can do to help a woman, except talk with them. I began waking at night, when we had my mom with us, burning up, covered in sweat and gasping for air. As if I were drowning. This photo depicts my panic attacks perfectly

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Too harsh! Then found a humor post from an old client : “You can have an amazing day if you decide not to be a miserable cow.” Then she added, I hear that a few cows had escaped in the neighborhood!
    I needed that before I could respond to your post.

    Liked by 3 people

  5. I like the lines you chose to share here, and I also enjoyed reading the entire poem that Kiki added. A good poem is one that produces deep-gutted reaction by readers, and this one sure did that! Me? I like the lines and the entire poem. Honest and raw, but in the end, I just feel grateful for the chance to be broken up through childbirth, raising children, working and loving, and yet, still floating. Rather gracefully, if I say so myself. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Exactly what Pam said…
    Thank you for sharing the little bit, David
    And thank you Kiki for sharing the whole poem.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. here’s hoping

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Christie says:

    The photo – seems unbalanced…I would think when a person floats the water across laying on top of face would be symmetrical, which it isn’t…the murky -ness of the water in the lower right,,,so dark and approaching her head as it to overtake her thoughts…/// what is visible of her hair looks like a new crop of growing alpha sprouts, with a several of the seeds attached to the end of the shaft…

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Christie says:

    David’s excerpt made me think about the word Ark…

    How the ark provided, protection and safety…the inhabitants -so much life aboard, sailed forth to a new beginning…

    I read what Kiki shared, as my mind flooded with so many thoughts…each person’s first hand account so unique…

    I thought of a woman experiencing the effect of Chemo…I read further and this made me think…”And in days, your son will have breathed air as long as water.” I though of the gift of breath…and how she had a baby boy who is turning 9 months old and how the baby boy did float while in the womb for the 9 month gestational period…when I was a teen I read an account of a pregnant woman who had Cancer, I believe Ovarian Cancer …and her position in the middle of Doctor’s diagnosis, their treatment plan forward and her and her husband’s wishes…I think she decided to hold off treatment and her baby was delivered at some point, Healthy…then she had her treatment…today they treat women with Breast Cancer while pregnant though some women opt to wait until after delivery…sometimes babies are born with Cancer and sometimes they discover an issue with a baby in-utero and the doctors are able to intervene with surgery in saving and improving the outcome of the babies life…”All a Miracle”
    I read further learning that for her she must have had a hormone imbalance…I never lost hair after I had a c-section birth…I learned to filter what other women told me about pregnancy and being a Mom…and welcomed what came along…yes, so very tired and feeling not equipped for the challenge ahead…and so thankful for the blessed gift of a child…and I remembered how the medical team through technology could see my baby who they called the Non-Viable Fetus…my/our baby never kicked or moved that I felt, she never “floated” in adequate amniotic fluid…she had other issues as well and the doctors said my/our pregnancy is terminated and at this point I am the patient and we don’t know if we can pull you through and the Non-Viable fetus is a by-product…you could imagine How I Stated my Case and said this is My Baby, and I know my Baby is Viable… I’ve lived a Life…you do everything possible for My/Our Baby…and the Reservoir that God created the Womb was Enough to sustain the Gift of A New Life…we welcomed a Beautiful, Precious Baby Girl who celebrated Her Birthday four days ago…She has been through much in her Life and Thankfully We see her Life now moving Positively Forward…and We Thank God!!!

    I did read a little about the author and others thoughts on this piece shared and I think about Life’s Incredible Journey…and for me how many links between her and what she describes, was meant for me to read…What Others Tell You and Don’t Tell You Isn’t Meant To Be Misinformation It Is Their Experience and If I Can Learn from Listening to Their Wisdom, learned through Grief and Joy in their Journey…I will Respect Them…and I as I witness them, some wheelchair bound and others walking so gingerly, my Heartbreaks for them… I am a strong person and the immediate undisclosed future is unknown to All of Us…Each breath is A Gift..

    Liked by 1 person

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