Fetus

I lie like a fetus,
tiny, unencumbered,
fragile. My heart is
beating but I have no
essence. I am mentally
dead, my brain exists
but has no value. It merely
does what it’s paid to do,
opens and closes
my heart, pushes blood around.
It has no value.

I lie like a fetus,
you pick me up and
plonk me in the half-empty tub.
I wish you’d drown me,
but you don’t; you confiscate
the razor blades instead,
they are contraband.
They won’t hurt me,
but people will.
You might even hurt me,
if you’re not careful.

I lie like a fetus,
you feed me soup
through my umbilical cord.
You tidy manically, saying
silly things. “A tidy home makes
for a tidy mind.” I just lie
and watch you picking tissues
and tobacco from the floor.
You strip me off. “Let’s get rid
of this hospital gown shall we?
It’s not the most attractive thing
in your wardrobe, girl.”
I lie like a fetus, dressed to impress
the world and the millions of people
that do not care.

I lie like a fetus,
my face covered in scratches.
Sometimes babies arrive with
scratches on their faces, I look like one.
Swollen face, covered in red lines,
eyes purple from all of the crying.
You clean my face with a baby wipe,
it is so soft it stings. I push you away.
My lips are raw, chewed, bloody,
you kiss me and tell me that
everything will be okay.
You lie to my baby face.

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One thought on “Fetus

  1. So brave, so terribly brave, to bear all this pain which seems to you, I think, at the moment – and for very many very long moments – utterly meaningless. Your writing is often of a phenomenal quality.

    And because you have this ability to write yourself (and other things, like your novel) onto the page, I think you will, perhaps, be able to survive these hellish times with a pen in hand and paper beneath it – or do you write on a lap-top of something like that?

    Many people would prefer you to take into your hand a writing instrument rather than a cutting one, and draw it across the page, in those appalling moments when you need relief. Let the pain and the rage and the chaos out into words, just strings of unconnected words – or even just letters – at the worst most incoherent times. Leave written traces so that we who value you can one day read. We long to read more of your writing. You are of great value to us.

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