The Trimurti: A Birthing Poem

My new little one.

by Alisa

Twelve days ago, I gave birth to my first baby. As I labored in the hospital, I was aware that I would be missing my dear oldest friend’s great big birthday bash that night. Diagnosed eight months ago with neuro-endocrine cancer, my friend recently learned she probably has less than six months to live. Deciding not to wait for her birthday later on in the year, a huge party was organized in her honor.

While I am overflowing with joy at the birth of my son, and the birth of my motherhood, I hardly know how to begin to say goodbye to someone who has always been there with me, through nursery, primary, junior high and high school, boyfriends, weddings, and more. I am struck by how seemingly polar opposites can hit our lives at the same time.

The Trimurti

I wore a necklace throughout my pregnancy
A trinity charm, swirled into one
Creator, Sustainer, and Purger

For all three sometimes come at once
As they often do at a birth, I suppose.
I crouch upward—breathing, pushing, exhaling
With all I have and more, then sink back,
Eyes shut, catching my breath
All of the moment in my heart.

I smile then—truly
Because I know nothing but love and intensity
For this baby boy

While I lay there
Another birthday is celebrated—
Really, it isn’t exactly her birthday
But if you had less than six months
You’d celebrate early too

Thirty years, her last milestone.
Shiva, do you know you take a mother of five babes?
What do you want to purge? I dare not ask why.

The Creator smiled on us that day twenty years ago
She and I sat over our cross-stitch, two merry misses
When Mother called from two houses down
To witness a birth
My calico calm, near serene, purred her kitten into life
With her hypnotic humming

And I, struggling to do things right
Hastened to tie the thin, red thread around the chord,
When he began to chirp, hardly a mew.

The Sustainer is come to stop time.
I never watch the ticking clock
And open my eyes with ecstatic surprise,
When they place his wet, slippery body on my chest.
And the weather is so mild

February forgot its season
At my back door a crocus pushes its tender leaves upward
Childhood is not unlike motherhood: tenderly aware of only now

Motherhood is not unlike the yoke
Of rainbow connections and pulsing sensations
I love, I feel, I know, I heal
As we vibrate to the lullaby
I sing in the key of present tense


Alisa is a professional adult educator and corporate manager who enjoys spending time with her husband and son.

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10 Responses

  1. pearlnelson says:

    This is truly lovely; what a gift for your newborn son. Blessings on your friend. Pearl

  2. Brooke says:

    I love this, Alisa. Love.

  3. Deborah says:

    So beautiful . . . and as a collector of February images, I loved: “February forgot its season/ at my front door” . . .

    Many congratulations . . .

  4. Idahospud says:

    Alisa, I am truly touched by your poem; it evokes a gentle Truth in me.

    Congratulations on your baby boy, who in his way is also a gentle Truth. He is beautiful.

  5. Alisa says:

    Thank you, ladies. I’m glad some of it makes sense. Too mulittle sleep can make for some incoherent poetry. 🙂

  6. EBrown says:

    Breathtaking. Thank you.

  7. Kelly Ann says:

    There are no words to describe how this made me feel. Thank you!

    Congratulations on your baby boy and best wishes for your friend!

  8. Jessawhy says:

    I love this. I hope you share it with your friend.

    It is so complete.

  9. Caroline says:

    Wonderful! And congratulations on your beautiful baby.

  10. Stella says:

    You are an excellent mother, wife and woman. I’m proud to know you.

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