by Allan Wolf
Your bellybutton is a mark
that tells you how you got your start.
For in the womb, long time ago,
you couldn’t eat or drink, and so
your mother was attached to you,
about midbelly, by a tube.
Umbilical’s its proper name,
and where they snipped it off became
your bellybutton, round and playful
(in fancy talk it’s called the navel.)
And that’s the truth, and so you see
your navel is no mystery:
It marks the spot your family
attached you to the family tree
when you began to be.
Copyright © 2003 Allan Wolf. From the book The Blood-Hungry Spleen: And Other Poems About Our Parts. Candlewick Press. Reprinted by permission of the author.
Just to show you that you can write a poem about anything!
Allan Wolf is an author and performance poet living in Asheville, NC. Before turning to writing full-time, Wolf was the educational director of Poetry Alive!, the national touring group that transforms poetry into theater. Wolf’s many books showcase his love of history, research, and poetry. His latest verse novel, The Watch that Ends the Night: Voices from the Titanic, was awarded the prestigious Claudia Lewis Poetry Award for the best poetry book of the year by Bank Street College. Watch was also chosen this year’s North Carolina Book of the Year. With literally hundreds of poems committed to memory, Wolf still travels the country presenting author visits and poetry shows for all ages.
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