'stone mother tongue' by Annamaria Weldon | States of Poetry WA - Series Two

Alabaster: such a beautiful word for silence.
Neolithic Venus, was translucence eloquent
enough when stone was our mother tongue?

Yellow-throated crocus were strewn
at your feet, they fed you honey
and broad beans. Worship swelled

your breasts and fertile belly, men lived
without weapons, women were weavers
and potters crowned in cowrie shells

at death and in time their whitened bones
dyed red, with precious ochre
the blood of second life.

When survival required human milk,
herbalists were doctors and spirals holy signs,
hysteria a gift, fecundity revered

you were honoured as mother of the world
incarnate and neither clerics nor sceptics mocked
our fealty to the sacred feminine.

Annamaria Weldon