Victoria Nordlund received her MALS from Wesleyan University. She is a 2018 Best of the Net Nominee whose work is published in PANK Magazine, Coffin Bell, Gone Lawn, Ghost Proposal, Amaryllis, Philosophical Idiot, and other journals. She lives in Glastonbury, Connecticut.
Queen Victoria had a baby tooth brooch and bracelet
made with the first milk teeth of her brood.
Clean white polished pieces set with gold.
Delicate relics formed to mourn nine childhoods
long since passed.
After my mom died, I found
my primary collection in a copper box
with a lock from my first cut–
The initial trimmings before I realized
Strange to hold my baby teeth–Bits of me
Yellow/tiny/ broken/blood/brown/ kernels/
wrangled from their roots. Felt the gaps again.
And with each little loss
came the promise of permanent ones.
I ordered a silver keepsake bracelet with mom’s ashes–
Heavy chain links with a toggle clasp.
Won’t fasten the slender canister through
the circle to rest on the skin of my wrist.
Can’t bear to lose this too.