What a time for my computer to go mad on me. Apologies for the lack of posts, my computer had been running a bit slow and refusing to load some pages and websites for a few days and then suddenly wouldn’t let me on my own website or into my data files and internet today and yesterday, resulting in my brilliant, tech savvy husband having to be summoned to clean it all out for me (no idea what’s involved in that but there’s likely a more accurate term for it) and finally my lovely mac is back online, sprightly and bright as a new computer. Now I’m playing catch up.
Instead of posting three separate posts on here, I thought I would share three poems, which I feel speak the truth about the difficulties of baby loss. Poetry, at its heart, like all creative arts, is a means of communication; a set of ideas and images and experiences passed from writer to reader in a conversation. To be able to capture the experience of baby loss in a way that is accessible to someone who hasn’t experienced it, to men and women alike, takes skill as well as a natural affinity for the emotional heartland where we reach out to each other, sharing experience. i love it when i recognise something of my own experience in someone else’s work.
First up, a poem and poet whom I have only just come across, whilst doing research for the Still Parents mini workshop I’ve been running for Baby Loss Awareness Week.
In his poem Miscarriage, Amit Mjmudar captures, through the intense and claustrophobic rushing style and lack of punctuation, the pressing-in on the post-miscarriage couple of a seething wave of babies and those, even in the natural world, who can multiply at will. Yes, I thought, as I read it, yes, this. You do not realise how geared to the family the world is until your family is lost, how alienating this loss is. This is how poetry works. Here’s the link: Miscarriage
Next up two poems on Karen Dennison’s website. I was lucky enough to be asked to write a little blurb for this book, it’s a wonderful collaboration between Karen Dennison and Valerie Morton. Whenever poets are working hard to raise awareness of baby loss, it touches my heart. Here are the poems Rosemary For Remembrance and Lost and you can buy the collection, Still Born here.
All profits are going to SANDS
And finally, I want to share a Plath poem. In this recording, Sylvia Plath reads her poem Parliament Hill Fields. I find it interesting that she is using the ‘you’ in the poem to speak directly to her unborn, lost baby, but also seems to feel the pressure to move on, to deal with it, to let go and be stoic and rational about the loss of a baby which was not quite yet a baby, but a ‘ghost of a leaf, ghost of a bird‘. It’s beautiful and though she’s not everyone’s cup of tea, I find her water like spilling of words over each other, her deliberate click-click ending of words, with no fear of mistaking them, absolutely gorgeous. So here you go: Parliament Hill Fields