Written by: Regina Asinde

Sharp piercing pains
rendered me breathless
I double over,
crouching low like a panther.
Fire, searing fiery fire
leaped at my sides,
licking my backside.
I groan and writhe,
growl and curse!

only the ticking clock
dares to surpass my loud moans.
Sweat trickles down my backside,
flowing down, forming rivulets as 
they meet and scamper downwards.
Another tormenting wrench!
This time a wounded lion’s roar echoes.
And so it went on—
Doctors and nurses
mumbled words meaningless
in the face of my helplessness!

I was gripped in the throes of labour pains;
my body betraying me
as it struggled to give life to another.
Seconds, minutes, hours ticked away.
and finally at the eleventh hour,
my energy spent,
my body bushed,
she burst through--
piercing the birthroom with a keening protest!

I lay down my head,
too exhausted to even offer her
a proper welcome
but a weary smile.