A Brutal Theory of the Fetal Heartbeat

Photo by Roma Kaiuk🇺🇦 on Unsplash

after the overturning of Roe v Wade by the Supreme Court Justices, June 24, 2022
following the expansion of the Second Amendment by the Supreme Court Justices,
June 23, 2022

what is life inside
the girl or the woman
alive in her body

her depths these laws
presume, newly revived

the scrutiny of judges, remote
in their black robes, the majority
including one woman

making history

in backwardness

their obsession about who
rules the uterus, the blood cycle
of women and girls

the sanctity of life

the blood of abortion sickening them so much more
than death by the violence

they have just facilitated—

the day before, mulling over language

to expand the right to bear arms
of all kinds, the Second Amendment
having been treated

as if it were a second-class right

needing correction
no matter mass murder
after mass murder—

no matter Uvalde
the lives of children

not the point—

as is the case today, efficiently

clearing the way
for prosecutors

to track the records of women and girls
to track each and every abortion

against the encoded

baby of the law

of unreason

the baby and mother both

to detection

of a heartbeat, bodies
owned by the law

historic, written out

against the girl or woman
alive inside her body

the trees full
in and of themselves

her own

these judges’ argument against her

their dismissal:

it is none of her business
to decide, to conceive
or not

and how they rope

these laws around her life, a life
they cannot imagine
yet they proceed

they in fact would
they in fact do

let her burn

stacking the laws
like wood around her feet
tying her hands

ready to let the fire catch

Share on Social Media:

Tikkun needs your support to bring the kind of analyses and information we provide.
Click Here to make a tax-deductible contribution.

Carter McKenzie is the author of the chapbook Naming Departure (Traprock Books, 2004), and two full-length books of poetry, Out of Refusal (Airlie Press, 2010) and Stem of Us (Flowstone Books, 2018). She is an active member of the Springfield-Eugene chapter of SURJ (Showing Up for Racial Justice).

Photo credit: Max McCarty (Pacific Photo Lab)


Comments are closed.