All night, your cheeks were hot, little one. 
I listened to your wails through the crackling yellow monitor next to my bed.
Your father and I threw off our covers and walked up the stairs to your room.
He lifted you from the crib 
and held you against his chest. Your cries became whimpers.
I got out a plastic syringe and drew thick purple liquid up into it, 
measuring the dose. I put the tip of the syringe into the corner of your mouth 
and pressed the medicine in. I wiped your chin with a cloth tissue, 
and brought you to my breast.
When I lay back down, I couldn’t sleep. The monitor was silent.
Were you breathing?
I went up to check on you, to watch your belly rise and fall with breath.
In the early morning, I abandoned my bed and walked down the wooden stairs, 
stepping lightly on the creaky planks.
The moon was still big and bright, high above the houses.
I sat down and pulled a blanket around my shoulders.
I turned my face to the moon
and closed my eyes. 
When I woke, the sky was beginning to lighten.
The moon was lower and fading away. 
A hummingbird hovered around my hanging basket out front,
dipping her beak into the clusters of white verbena.
My professor once said
that the hummingbird, like the bee, establishes a static charge 
whenever it approaches a blossom. 
The flower bends toward this electricity 
and lengthens its stamen, preparing for the bird’s long tongue to take up its nectar.
But what kind of charge does the hummingbird make when her babies cry, 
when she flies home to her nest, made of milkweed and spider silk?
Is it like the surge I feel in my head when you cry, little one? 
Is it like the shock that runs like a cold fire through my limbs, 
only to balance when I bring you next to my body, 
and place my breast inside your open mouth?

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