There’s a truth that most people prefer to keep quiet,
unshared with their friends and their kin—
but it’s high time that everyone ceased to deny it:
a newborn is ugly as sin.
You can dress it in taffeta, ribbon and lace;
you can scrub it each hour of the day;
you can name it Belinda Veronica Grace;
it’ll still look like rump roast manqué.
Any puppy or kitten is sweeter by far,
any lamb, piglet, gosling or foal—
even marmoset infants make ours seem sub-par—
so if having a baby’s your goal,
don’t expect me to call the thing “darling” or “cutie”
or “precious” or “dear little elf.”
Only one child has ever been born a real beauty:
the one I gave birth to myself.
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Daphne Milne has been published in a number of magazines, such as Acumen, Sarasvati, Reach Poetry, Poetry Cornwall, Poetry Space and on the Poetry Kit website. She also writes short stories and flash fiction. Her work has won, been placed or commended in various competitions, as well as being included in anthologies already in print or due to appear in 2017.