by Stephen Paul Wren

(Psalm 139:13-16)

Celebrating the egg’s transition 
trimester one
clump of cells 
then primordial 
jaw, throat, mouth, eyes
toes, ears, pre-limbs
sac exterior (draw-strung) purged with water

All the world’s emotions
break in the presence of a miracle
The work of the Lord’s hand
in his heritage

Another miracle shines
the developing placenta
and its manna
and blood cells are taking shape

The blood chemistry bubbles 
His crafting of the brain and spinal cord advances
The birth of a soul
precious to Him
and unique
growing in bones and dancing to the new heartbeat
one day these fledging fists might open for Him
the micro mouth might sing for Him
they are designed to do so

The beginnings of facial recognition 
trimester two
in Halls of growth
fingers and toes are works of art 
His love keeps crafting 

Forming eyelashes, hair and nails
dense bones, body fat
The web of nerves starts to function
so do His seeds of purpose
for the new life
each muscle fibre is touched by His hand
the fetus responds to Him
and to light

Trimester three 
the fetus gains weight 
and wonder lungs
the blending of a soul into flesh
each reflex trains in the tight space 
the gentle, and strong womb
the baby is ready now 
it enters the word with its soul shaped 

Dr Stephen Paul Wren was educated at Cambridge and worked as an industrial chemist before transitioning back into academia at Oxford. He joined Kingston University in September 2018 where he works as a Senior lecturer. Stephen’s poetry can be read here.

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