I remember the girl who sat across from me in sewing class in 7th grade
I remember how she disappeared amid a flurry of rumour
I remember her reappearance to the next school year, a year later
We knew where she went.
It was 1967. And we knew she had been swallowed up with no choice
By St Mary’s Home for Unwed Mothers
When she returned no one ever said a thing.
I remember the ones whose parents in 1970 and 1971
Who were out of school for “medical procedures” because their
Parents had enough money to pay for something that was
Not yet legal
I remember my very straight arrow mother choosing a differnet doctor because the Catholic
doctor in 1969 didn’t believe in abortion and my mom wanted that option
open to her daughters, legal or not.
I remember the friend who later told me about almost bleeding to death
From a back alley practitioner
I remember not once did any one say anything about the boys
who changed a girl’s life and bore no consequences
I remember marching in the pouring rain in 1986
Dressed in white, the largest protest march ever in LA
I remember being elated to be with so many like-minded women and some men
And coming around the corner in Century City to be confronted
By angry screaming men covered in blood and waving bloody baby dolls
And being beyond angry.
How dare they scream at women
How dare they try dictate what I do with my body?
How dare they condemn little girls who were barely out of babyhood themselves?
To being mothers or having to pretend the new baby was their sister and not theirs
How dare this history be repeated?
How dare they???