thHere’s to you, a sterile woman
for your children will not
inherit the earth
whilst underneath your sweating arms
tired with empty burdens
you hold up the belief
less is more and more
is not always best
if that ruffles a few feathers
puts a nose out of joint
causes a skirmish
so be it
you will stand
among the tall old men with their placards
of ‘don’t kill babies’ and headless dolls
throwing fake blood at women
who enter the sanctum
you will stand and spread
your merciful wings
shining they stretch
to cover even the fearful
do not be afraid you say
I will see you safe
murderers! murderers!
the tall old men shout
rattling their signs and faux uterus
rot in hell!
the words of a good Christian
spat on her dress a glob of hate
you feel nothing no damage
you are the light who guides
these women have decided
and it is their right
not an easy choice
but one they alone should make
not governments or men
with signs and garish photographs
of bloody murder as they proclaim
swearing hate with
bible in one shaking hand
where lies
their mercy?
she sits here
in a quiet kitchen
without children underfoot
and is still
and is yet
to protect the ones who can
as she cannot
for her womb
is absent and if they knew
the haters would
this is God’s doing
you deserve to be barren
damn you
such is the gentle heart
of a believer
Many women I encounter say they would never have an abortion because of their personal beliefs but equally they would never take away the option for someone else. That is what this is all about. Choice. Personally I have noticed  a shift toward restricting/banning abortion, swings-and-roundabouts, in 20 more years it’s going to shift the other way. Point being, abortion is never ideal, but the right to make a choice is an ideal worth striving for, worrying that this is being ignored. When you search for pro-choice online there is not as much as pro-life, giving the impression we’re shifting radically. I’d say it’s more the vehemence of extremists scaring others to speak out, thus I speak out, as a woman who cannot have children and would love to, but believes others need to make their own choices about their own bodies. Will be interesting how many followers I lose by the days end. And that’s okay.

0 Replies to “Choice”

  1. Is it just me, or are the ones who spout religious rhetoric and fire and brimstone the least Christ-like of all? What would Jesus do? He would comfort, understand, and forgive. These headless doll carrying, faux blood spewing, hate filled faux “believers” are no more than agenda driven sheep filled with anything but compassion. Like the Westboro Baptist numbnuts. I don’t think that is what Jesus would do.

    1. Maybe it’s not for me to say but if you read how christ was supposed to be and then see their actions it’s hard to reconcile them or recognize them … I get the feeling of desperation and anger and outrage, that’s their right, but I also think there is something else going on. I don’t think it’s what jesus would do, he may not approve, who knows, but he wouldn’t try to shoot people or throw rocks at them.

      1. I’m really glad that you found something in it. I try hard to speak for those who are condemned needlessly. Thank you so much for your appreciated words my friend xo

  2. They are the same people who scream ironically about Islam being a religion of peace. It isn’t, obviously. It’s a militant religion like Christianity. But I say unto them, Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother’s eye.
    Pretty good for a non-believer, heh?

    1. I wonder if any organized religion can be a religion of peace? It would be nice. Not sure it happens. Seems a lot of wars are over such things. Nothing wrong with faith or spirituality but when someone decides to tell someone else what to do and what they are not permitted to do, barring the obvious wrong-doings, I have an issue with it. (VERY good for a non-believer by the way! A for you!)

          1. There’s been a conservative backlash everywhere. I don’t understand why it’s happened in the US since you have a much higher standard of living than anywhere else and (we’re always told) a great education system. Anti-choice is the spearhead of the patriarchal reaction. Get the women out of the workplace and back into the kitchen/bedroom.

          2. I don’t get it either … ethos maybe cyclical? Can we really be such dumb animals *I think we know the answer* gone is the Tony Ben era for sure. Ps our education system is shameful compared to France and the UK

          3. We were always told how much the US spends on education, a phenomenal amount so that everyone has an equal chance in life. It’s true I’ve heard rather different reports lately. It did seem a bit too generous to be true.

          4. They spend tons as with healthcare miles more than any other country and have less to show. Hence why a French degree usually counts for a master’s here

          5. SO wrong!!! Don’t they know Goldsmiths is excellent? Idiots. I know what it is about going outside, seeing other people the futility of nearly everything how humankind is a blight an evil on this earth, even roads, cars, all the ruin we wrought only to live consumerism and shallow paper gods populating the world with our greed sin and lies. Makes me want to nuke us all.

  3. Of course you know I stand behind you always. I think the biggest roadblock to everyone seeing that abortion is a sad, but necessary option, is the propagation of the myth that there are a large group of women who use it as birth control. If you study the statistic (real statistics submitted by the facilities that perform abortions) you will see that this is simply not the case. Has it happened? perhaps….but it is not the norm. Abortions are performed for several reasons but most of the time they are for legitimate and heartbreaking reasons. We do not comfort those who need to make those decisions by calling them monsters. But, as is all too evident, most of mankind lacks the ability to place yourself in the position of the person with the problem. I guarantee you, if there were some magical power that could do that…you would find no one standing outside places throwing blood on people and calling them names. What at terrible choice to have to make. How can we not feel a great outpouring of compassion for someone who has had to sign their name to a document with the full understanding of what that means.
    We must do everything we can to preserve the right to make decisions about our own health and welfare. Even if they can not understand “pro-choice” why can they not understand that it is a building block in a wall of other choices.. Once you say NO! you may not make that choice, it is illegal. Then we open the door for other things.
    No one is ending a human life for “kicks”. But they will always paint it that way.

    1. So true. I often hear the ‘so many people use abortion as birth control’ and ‘i know women who have had 15 abortions’ but I feel it’s just a staid and inaccurate counter to the logic of choice. I also believe any woman who has an abortion does so having carefully weighed her decision. Of course there are exceptions (to everything) I also believe in women’s equality and rights, which diminish if they are not in control of their OWN bodies. I once read that if men got pregnant there would be abortion services on every corner, I kinda believe that. I do see this in terms of gender. I realize many women are anti-choice also and they have that right, but I believe at the crux of it, is a life long suppression of the equality of the genders and the history of men controlling women. This doesn’t occur as much now, of course, but that’s why women must retain a choice or we step backward. I believe in America abortion will be banned again, if we look at the change in population throughout the world we see that Islam will be the biggest religion by 2050. As it stands the majority of those who believe in Islam are anti-choice/pro-life so it stands to reason as Islam replaces Christianity as the dominant voice abortion and choice are going to be restricted and this worries me no end. I agree, we must do all we can to preserve choice but I fear since there is this change and shift it won’t be enough.

        1. I also admire you as I know how much you love LIFE and humanity and people and so for you to have this respect for women’s right to choose, well I just really admire that.

  4. This is amazing and made my day. Thank you so much for posting it.
    Abortion is never easy; it’s not a decision a woman makes. I have a very dear friend who had an abortion at 18. At the time it was the best option for her situation (abusive boyfriend) and she had to make that difficult choice.
    But it’s her choice. And it will always be her choice. Not yours or mine or the government or the pro lifers or the pro choicers.
    What gets me about the bible thumpers is they think all women embody Lena Dunham’s sentiments of “I still haven’t had an abortion, but I wish I had.”
    They aren’t whores or morally loose or bad people.
    Personally, because I work with newborns and premature babies, I have a different perspective. I could never do it. But that’s my choice.
    But I understand the plight of a woman having to weigh her options on whether or not to abort or keep.
    It’s a tough decision; a necessary evil.
    And if these so called Christians really wanted to help, they would comfort these women, as Jesus would do, than berate and harass them as they are making one of the hardest decisions of their life.
    Sorry, ranty diatribe.
    But I liked your poem. It summed up my thoughts perfectly.

    1. You said it best. That’s your choice. And I admire the person who personally would never have an abortion but still believes in other’s choices, more than anyone else. My best friend would never have had an abortion either, she’s a very devout christian but she believes other women have a choice and would never condemn someone or restrict access. I admire that because it means you can see beyond yourself to the rights of others. Just as I see beyond myself as someone who will never have children, to the rights of those who want children to have them and those who want a termination to have it. There are times it just is the right choice for her, and nobody, no Government should ever say otherwise. As women we had a life time of oppression that’s why nobody but ourselves should control our bodies. Thank you so much ! And for your really great answer here I so appreciate you and agree with your last lines so much ‘they are making the hardest decision of their life’ well said!

      1. First of all, I’m not a single issue blog follower, so no worries about me following you. 😀 Let me be the devils advocate. It’s a womans body, it’s a womans right to choose. Why is it that prostitution is illegal in most parts of the US? It’s your body after all.

        1. I like that you are a devils advocate, the only way we grow is to consider answers to questions that we haven’t considered. Okay I’ll give you my ten cents. It struck me always that when a prostitute and john are found together, it’s the prostitute who is definitely arrested, I always thought both were ‘illegal’ but I feel the woman often is punished more harshly because of how women are perceived (by men and other women) in our society and the double-standard therein. I personally do not believe in the legalization of prostitution because I think prostitution is exploiting women. Does a woman have a right to be a prostitute? Yes. Does she have a right to be protected by the law? Maybe somewhat. So the solution compromise could be, less legal woes for those caught as prostitutes. The legality of prostitution I cannot support in the same way I may say a woman’s right to choose means I support the legality of abortion because whilst abortion can help someone (a girl who is raped and does not want the rapists baby, the population that does not need to be bigger or filled with unwanted kids, a drug-addict who knows bearing a baby would be harmful to the baby, or a mother of three who cannot afford a fourth baby and has thought that through) whereas prostitution’s benefits are less clear. A prostitute can make money. But she could do something else. It would be less harmful for her to do something else. Many prostitutes get into the life by a series of negative experiences that lead to her feeling she has less choices (I realize there are some who ‘choose’ though I would argue, it’s less choice than where they end up due to abuse and other things, I also know there must exist, exceptions so I’m generalizing a bit) and as for men? I don’t see why a man needs or should have a prostitute. Period. They have a hand. There is nothing good comes from sex for money though it could be argued a woman marrying a much older richer man is prostituting herself too that’s more socially acceptable which is a bit hypocritical I know, but prostitution runs terrible risks of STD’s, rape, abuse, pimps, violence. That said. I realize as the oldest profession it will never go away, and may provide some succor for say, a man whose wife is an invalid, I still am not happy with it but would not tell a woman not to do it (I would look down on a man who went to a prostitute conversely) so in that sense, I wouldn’t overly criminalize it, and equally, back-street prostitution can be risky but when legalized the differences were not so great whereas back-street abortion is very dangerous and when legalized the difference was great. I would say ultimately better contraception should exist, to avoid abortion period. But what of rape? Incest? Abuse? And what of accidents that do occur? Too long women were not given a choice over their own bodies. I agree, a prostitute has the choice over her own body to some extent but I do see the differences too. As much as anything as with pornography I think there are complex side-influences that cause women to ‘feel’ they have no choice but to do porn, and it is on a backbone of exploitation – I’m not pro-porn or pro-prostitution but I also believe in being fair with those who do it anyway unless it involves rape or abuse of others.

  5. Bravo! Bravo! 👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻
    Not only for your fabulous words, my friend, but for the beautiful and thoughtful comments from these souls who comprehend the call to love unconditionally.

  6. Seen in Avila, Spain. “Alejad vuestros rosarios de nuestros ovarios” / Take your rosaries away from our ovaries. I must remember to publish that photo. Thank you for reminding me.

    1. Thank you so much! I do think until it’s not ‘daring’ to write something like this, we need to speak out more, because it is such a tempestuous climate. I appreciate your comment and reading of this very much!

  7. These are the same people backing the defunding of free lunches for underprivileged. School kids , Medicaid , planned parenthood ( which many women rely on for health care, mammograms, pap , without which they will be without any proactive testing) . The same folks who want to shut down homeless shelters. The truth is they want to have control over the fetus but once it is here they don’t give a damn about that child. Shame on you hiding behind your “religion” without an ounce if empathy. Great post Feathers. We need to stand up to these hypocrites.

    1. I relate deeply to this, especially the idea that if someone says ‘you can’t murder your child’ so convinced because of their hate that this is all that is going on, they then kill the doctor who performs the procedure, mmm and that’s not murder? Or the man who walked away and is unaccountable? Or the man who told his gf to get an abortion but the law still says, you need to let him know if you’re going to do it … or you need to have a transvaginal scan of ‘the child you’re going to murder’ before being ‘allowed’ to have a termination. All seems very dark ages to me. I grew up when choice was not questioned as much and I wonder why we’ve taken such a giant step backward … those happy about that would say it’s about time, it’s a natural learning curve but I don’t think so. I think women are tricking themselves into thinking their rights being eroded isn’t going to hurt them. The saddest part being all the defunding you are so right, people say don’t murder a baby but it’s okay to let them starve when they get older. mmm

      1. There’s some very brain washed women out there , they have handed their rights over to the narrow minded conservative radicals and have become the same. Pity for all of us.

          1. Unfortunately, we are not in control right now of what is happening to women’s rights, that has been granted to the misogynistic whims of the powers that managed to somehow gain control of our government. But we can fight this and clean the “swamp” for real if we all come together.

  8. Just the other day I entertained my belief in accessible options for women – Pro-Choice by experience. Like you, I thought, how many followers could I drop if I simply posted this:
    “I’m pro-choice… Shit happens…”
    Thanks for sharing your thoughts – I do have one son (first pregnancy)

      1. Yep – I agree – but I seem to have so few to lose – I may get up my nerve someday?
        One would certainly have to have the right psychology for it…
        And me – I guess I have the best of both worlds. <3

  9. I can understand someone not wanting to have an abortion, but I am very much pro-choice. You are right that it is about choice. I know several women who made that difficult choice, and both of my daughters work with organizations that help women to have that choice. Throughout history, women have had abortions–and up until the 19th century, they were legal (or at least not illegal) in the U.S. and many other places, if they took place before the woman felt “quickening” or movement.
    I might have some respect for someone being “pro-life” (though not condone the bloody images and harassment of women) if they also do not consume meat and are against capital punishment–and support access to birth control and sex education. Otherwise, they are hypocrites. They are not pro-life; they’re pro-fetus.

    1. Excellent! Funny what people get worked up about, they pick and choose leaving me to think there’s another agenda. So Merill, i got your book and am reading it now, good grief it’s superb. I’m so full of admiration I wish I’d had it when I worked at the rape crisis center.

  10. I’m with you on this topic. I would like to see all those protesting to instead, adopt and take on all responsibility for those children. If you don’t want a woman to get an abortion, fine, then step up and take the child, give him/her the love/care/nurturing/financial support. Stop shouting hatred and do something REAL, something that will actually be helpful and meaningful, full of love instead of hate

          1. Yes, it is good to be back. I guess writing is a part of me I will never be able to get rid of me. I’m ok with that 🙂

  11. Excellent, thought-provoking post. I have never minded the actions of another and would never judge or condemn, however I may get a little judgey at someone who has had, say, five abortions but I’ll cross that bridge when I come to it. I am infertile and found out when I was twenty-nine and I will always defend the right to choose. Life is full of choices and I am sure those vehemently spouting angry placard waving folk will despise many of mine

  12. Well I am thinking of Lermontov’s speech to Vicky… be a little housewife with a bunch of screaming children. When I was born there were 3 billion in the world now we are cresting 8. Now I added to that sum in my small way but I feel overcrowded. You will never lose me Feather

  13. I have only just read this, being relatively new to the blogging world.
    I, mother of two beautiful girls, was always adamant I would never have a termination. Although a Christian, it was not my reason, just that I could never see there being a reason that I would not give a child a chance at life. Until I was in a situation where I had to make that decision of course. In the midst of a life changing “drama”, a woman has to decide what is best for herself, and also, the unborn baby.
    The medication I am now on, should I have chosen to go through with the pregnancy, would have affected the child. Had I not continued the medication but continued with the pregnancy, I could have caused the death of myself and the child in the process whilst also leaving my two daughters without a mother. So I had to make a decision that has plagued me, even though I still stand by my decision to abort that pregnancy. I did not tell ANYONE this. Not even the father of the child. He knew I was pregnant and was in as much of a quandry as I. Only a few people close to me knew of the situation, and I told them all that I had miscarried. Even my partner. Isn’t it sad that, despite genuine reasons for this pregnancy not to continue, I felt so ashamed? My mental health deteriorated quickly after that and I had to admit to the people that knew, I hadn’t miscarried. It was a choice. One I didn’t want to make, but then what woman would CHOOSE to be in the situation of putting herself through that just for the sake of it?!
    Thank you for posting this…. xx

    1. That’s a terribly difficult impossible situation and i admire you for sharing your experience. You’re so right. It’s unfair and wrong we’re ever embarrassed afraid or ashamed but it is how it is, and so hard. I really hipe you know you did nothing to ever be ashamed of ever, I personally believe in choice but I also belief in the rights of women to do whatever they need for their health and body. Your story is especially challenging because for some it is less prohibative, and yet I admire those who do what they must although truthfully you had no real choice. You put security and love of your family first, you couldn’t risk that being lost, I would have made the same choice but it must have still been very, very hard. I truly appreciate you sharing your experience and hope very much you never condemn yourself ever♡♡♡

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