november 13th (2003)

I saw the news last night.
I never do -- I remember why.

We argue, we fight
about whether or not
this bit of tissue or that cell bundle is
or isn't
a child, is
or isn't
whole, is
or isn't living outside of us while inside, if
halting the process before
bringing it into being is
or isn't right, and yet:

The skeletons of whole infants born,
live and breathing, crying and warm
are found near daily, discarded
in a dusty crate behind a pair of old shoes
and a sweater seldom worn
by women
who report a miscarriage
or hide a pregnancy under
that same sweater, or tell
their doctors they aren't sexually active, or
refuse to hear options, swift-shaking heads with
it's my baby.
Tight-closed mouths with I don't believe in abortion,
it's wrong, it's wrong.

Swift-shaking heads who birth alone and afraid
on bathroom floors;
tight-closed mouths who toss a strangled child
in a crate, a dumpster, under a floor
and quietly close, close the door.

A man working hospitality for an airline
received a four-month suspension today.
An infant was crying, and so he'd -- hospitably --
placed a tablet of Xanax inside a bottle,
to politely quiet her cry;
delivered it to her parents without a word
with a napkin and peanuts on the side;
with a thank you for flying the friendly skies.

I saw the news last night.
I never do -- I remember why.

© 2003 Heather Corinna. All rights reserved.