Blackberries by Tina Carey


In the delivery room.    I
        land on the smell of my mother
                embraced by strangers

she only woke from her dead emotions
                for me     in june

when we searched for ripe blackberries.     she
        glowed at the site of the blackish fruit.   she
                awed at the perfectly shaped bush.  she
kneeled as nature’s breath helped drop her blessing.

tenderly plucks and cradles each one in her dainty hand and
places the overflow in the tiny folds of mine.

                                   be careful
                                                                                                                              she said.
                           don’t hold them too tight
                                                                                                                              she said.

                the juice—                                                                       stains

if only I had never washed my hands.   at least

at least

we’d have that.

Tina Carey is a mental health advocate, podcaster, and poet who scribbled her first verse when she was nine years old. Tina is originally from Knoxville, Tennessee. She currently resides in Chesapeake, VA. She writes about unfiltered trauma, grief, and healing. Tina hopes to create a path for anyone who walks in their truth to stand on proudly. Tina has been published by The Voices Project, AntiherionChick, Poetica Review, and featured in her first editorial addition of Yoni Circle in October 2021.

Image Credit: Collage of mulberry branches [] and the abstract pregnant woman []