we have hands
and we were born pure
to this world, maiden;
but we are not handmaids,
vessels to be filled,
at another’s will;
it may be that we have the gift
to carry life into the world,
but the weight of a life can weigh heavy,
can force a back to break and crack;
we need both those hands
to grip, to fill and to empty
our own cup, before it cleaves in two;
if those hands are tied
behind our backs,
who will catch us
when pushed to fall?
we have seen how this world
likes to snatch and grab,
it doesn’t listen when out we call,
it has deafened even our sisters
to our cries,
and we fall, broken to the floor.
you cannot take our hands,
they are ours not yours,
it would be like cutting off your feet,
so you cannot walk behind us
late at night, or creep into our room,
so you cannot stand in front of us
grasping at our flesh
thinking you have a right to it,
because we are soft
and were born with a womb.
how would you like it
if you were made to always crawl?
by emma blas
Last week in Alabama, USA, a law was passed making the providing of an abortion a felony, punishable by prison. 25 white men voted in the law. This poem is not about abortion. It is about a white male majority making decisions about that affect all women.
“Though women make up 51% of Alabama's population, its lawmakers are 85% male. There are only four women in the 35-seat Alabama Senate, and they are all Democrats.” (bbc news)