Poem: A Poem For My Baby

By Jo Thomas

woman and heart illustration

When young and starved of affection and attention – one accepts advances as love.

Disappointed in love you moved within me.

I woke to pain.

I entered the corridors as a child – carrying a child – banished to the end of the corridor so my screams for my mother would not challenge the ‘acceptable others’.

Who will comfort me, who will hold my hand?

A new day dawned. A sterile theatre removed the remnants of your life – back in my balcony, alone, I wept. Will anyone be kind to me?

What will happen to my baby? I want to see her. It would be good to know.
Change your mind and stay.
For my heart cries for you. I know, I wanted you as a child.
I wanted to hear your heart beat
To see you grow
To hold your hand
To be your mother
There will be no photograph
There will be no funeral
The grief is mine alone.
I did not choose what I would give up, the things I loved were taken from or never part of me at all – if I am lucky.
I accept my world as it is, not as I would wish it to be.

Go forth, go forth, be grateful, for there is no shame for your family.

I leave silently, my pain weeping within. Too painful too shameful to speak.
My heart holds all within it – all that I may protect.
The voice of my heart has been silent since that day.
Life is defined not by what we let go but what we let in.

In terms of identity and peace of mind, if I can right one small thing of the past, it will give me strength for the future.

I will tell your truth
I will tell your story

The things that mean the most to me are never mine alone. I walk always in the footsteps of the soul who went before.


Jo Thomas

Christchurch, NZ


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