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Confessions of a Baby Snatcher

This is my last confession, there will be no more. I am impercipient and slow from last night's sleeping pill, wincing away from the harshness of day. Kitchen cold, the room tear-splintered, sunlight striking a watery rainbow in my eyes; air smothering-stale from my hopeless coffee cup crying, whilst life outside the window ticks on relentlessly. Seconds turn into minutes turn into hours... When you plashed your pearlescence over my pale skin I never guessed the inner ugliness of those seascape pearls encircling each ovary, stubbornly adhesive, leaching new life. The scanner's screen sizzling static, darkening to nightshade depth, its impersonal probe trailing damp viscosity over my belly; shockingly sticky as the first time you came on me but lacking the warmth. Puppetted by pity, you brought me pink carnations, crushed their bright, baby-frail faces into a tacky hospital vase. I am weighted with a multitude of baby-frail faces. Indifference cold-eyed me at the hospital: histrionic, hysterical, a blubbing huddle of neuroses - Doctor will I conceive again? - a collocation of surgical steel and wonder drugs. Drugs to inflate the ovaries with a Botox bloat. Drugs to wipe clean the scribbled slate of the mind. You left me to weep amongst white hospital sheets, coffin-cold, my hands folded on emptiness, a paint palette of blood inks seeping from me. Brushed by the soft wing of silence, what was being concealed? The products of conception, screened from view? The unseen dead, faceless and nameless, trundling on trolleys through sterile corridors to the eager heat blast of the incinerator - their crematorium. They said I could try again but barrenness occupies my bed; it is a womb-burrower, fattening stealthily on menstrual blood. The claw of infertility is clamped on my shoulder, torturous flesh-hooks digging at my skin. I ache all day from blanched almond ovaries; fragile finger-fronds stilled to nothingness... I find myself miraculously in the shopping mall; my feet have no memory of the pavement that brought me here. Fruit machines flicker and wince like migraine. I circle the shop floor, keeping a safe distance. I am not dangerous. I am not predatory. I only seek to protect the meek, to shield them from the vodka bottle, the beatings, the needle in the arm. Beneath the strip light's dizzying glare, tenderly fingering bootees soft as puppies, mittens like kittens, the meek sweet sleep smell pulling me in. My purchases earn me a benevolent smile from pretty Pollyanna at the cash till. The tapestries of faces at school gate gatherings - faces daffodil-bright, sunstruck and open with joy; the happy heaving hordes. I am not dangerous. I am not predatory. I only yearn to merge with the scenery of domesticity, immersing myself in routine and normality. Noticing individuality, the way it blossoms in every pram, hazed by the human differences. Vertiginous spinning of kaleidoscope and rainbow; the park a synaesthetic playground: blood bursts of poppy, fire flames of freesia. My audible emptiness clattering; a hollow pod rattling amongst bud bursts of green, fruiting trees, flowers heavy with pollen. A sickly size six drifting diaphanously; the scenery of pregnancy swelling around me. Encircled by circularity: round bellies, round faces, roundabouts spinning, globular beach balls and balloons, blossom spheres shaken from trees shivering to the ground. Awake again last night in smothering, starless dark, that tiny bloodied form beating like a trapped butterfly inside my head, face pressed into a tear-damp pillow, recalling the bathroom's midnight chill as I knelt in raw ruby carnage on the floor. This is my last confession, there will be no more.

Copyright © | Year Posted 2014

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Date: 12/13/2022 1:29:00 AM
Like the rawness of this poem. How we covet what others have just to feel sane. Life is cruel and death is so expensive, and someone has made a gender-neutral snow person across the road from me. What has happened to the world.
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Date: 1/25/2015 9:58:00 PM
Charlotte I have always felt you were among the best writers on the site and still do. Light & Love Always
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Date: 9/10/2014 4:05:00 PM
An exquisite piece... congratulations!
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Date: 3/30/2014 8:20:00 AM
This poem demanded to be read and I must say I am in awe. Beyond exceptional! I was greatly moved. Second stanza did you mean splashed? This poem is one that you should be very proud of, poets could spend a lifetime writing and never write one as good as this one.
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Puddifoot Avatar
Charlotte Puddifoot
Date: 4/5/2014 7:18:00 PM
no 'plashed' is an actual word, basically means the same as splashed, but I wanted the alliteration in that line
Date: 3/5/2014 6:01:00 PM
hey, Charlotte. thanks for visiting me today. Waiting for more of your splendid work.
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Date: 2/13/2014 7:24:00 PM
I can see what it's all about but i am sad that one should go thru so much in life to come up with this sort of exquisite poetry. it is really a piece of epic proportions with elegant expressions which are characteristic of your singular voice . A BIG Congratulations to you, dear one, xoxo!!
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Date: 2/13/2014 8:04:00 AM
This writing is extraordinary and the theme you chose is such a tough one to write about! Congrats Charlotte on a great win! hugs..
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Date: 2/12/2014 3:32:00 PM
this is exceptional Charlotte congrats on fine poem and even finer win hugs
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Date: 2/11/2014 11:33:00 PM
I saw no congratulations down below my comment but I just knew this must have won the contest, so I went back to check and sure enough, I saw it: first place win!! Big congrats to you, dear.
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Date: 2/11/2014 11:31:00 PM
Charlotte, is this one I read before then? SOme parts of it are so familiar to me. It's full of that sorrow that can only be felt by someone living this kind of misfortune. Full of symbolism and stunning imagery, a poem that you put your heart into. I really liked the part where you paint the vivid contrast between yourself and the happy school children. Wow. Congrats that it is now posted in its entirety!!
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Date: 2/11/2014 5:56:00 PM
poetry with out all the colours. but you did manage to inject a few. knowing you this affected me in away i cannot say i did not expect. i read it in seriousness but also as a poet. i was impressed especially with the repetative lines. surrealism is when a person writes about what they personally experience. this was very surreal. i could see the insane reasoning reasonably. just for memory of you i'll fav it and copy it too. congrads on this masterpiece or realism. yours john
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Date: 2/11/2014 4:51:00 PM
So gut-wrenching and honest, this poem must feel like sharing your soul. It cannot be compared to any other...... remarkable courage to write!! Kuddos to you Charlotte!
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