I was born three months premature.
My mom ate poison mushrooms
and drank Southern Comfort
because she thought it would
make her more like Janis Joplin.
She was right.
Her singing voice improved
when she was hallucinating and drunk.
The commune midwife who delivered me
believed it wise to play music
for the mother-to-be in labor.
She played Janis Joplin, Neil Young,
the Byrds, and Led Zeppelin.
I came out of my mother’s womb
to Zeppelin’s “Going to California,”
a pretty song for acoustic guitar
three minutes and thirty-six seconds long.
When the song came to an end, so did I.
My mother followed the next day.
I lived my entire life in a hippie commune.