Archive for October 15th, 2017

Sunday, 15 October 2017

The Country Midwife: A Day by Ai Ogawa (Florence Anthony)

I bend over the woman.
This is the third time between abortions.
I dip a towel into a bucket of hot water
and catch the first bit of blood,
as the blue-pink dome of a head breaks through.
A scraggy, red child comes out of her into my hands
like warehouse ice sliding down a chute.

It’s done, the stink of birth, Old Grizzly
rears up on his hind legs in front of me
and I want to go outside,
but the air smells the same there too.
The woman’s left eye twitches
and beneath her, a stain as orange as sunrise
spreads over the sheet.
I lift my short, blunt fingers to my face
and I let her bleed, Lord, I let her bleed.


Date: 1973

By: Ai Ogawa (Florence Anthony) (1947-2010)