A flash sparked across the sky,
people cheered under lights of blue and red and white,
but I couldn’t hear the crowd
over my own screaming.
I paid the ‘doctor’
before he ushered me out the back alley,
still bleeding.
I fell into bed that night
cold and barren,
my womb destined for emptiness.

The young woman in front of me
sheds tears and dignity
as she talks about the violation.
I hold her hand,
her feet rest in stirrups.
My tools are clean,
her choice is valid.
Freedom is more than patriotic fireworks.

This piece was originally posted on I shall be a toad for the speakeasy #100 – a piece of fiction or poetry using the first line, “A flash sparked across the sky” and referencing, in some way, the picture below. I thought today was an appropriate time to repost it.Freedom