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Sunday, August 07, 2022


by Donna Katzin

In the wake of Roe v. Wade’s demise
we see it coming—a blood-red wave  
that threatens to drown us
and our rights.
As pundits puzzle
and suited strategists opine,            
we step out from porches, campuses, back alleys,
leave our coat hangers in our closets,
rags and basins in our kitchens,
knock on doors of neighbors
who have yet to come out
of the house.                 
A horse parade prances by
with signs, “vote neigh,”
posters of a uterus
in a cowboy hat.
Texts like urgent birds,
words whispered, then spoken,
fly by in flocks unfettered
as our voices and our votes.
Our minds, our bodies                                                  
are our own—
will not be captured
any more than the wind.       
Author’s Note: On August 2, Kansas women and their supporters mobilized voters across the state to beat back a proposed amendment that would have allowed the state legislators to restrict or ban the abortion rights affirmed in the state’s constitution.  With an historic primary turn-out of half the state’s registered voters, the 59 to 41 percent victory at the polls built on decades of activism to protect women’s right to make their own decisions about their own bodies and health.  In the process, it set an important precedent for the nation following the US Supreme Court decision to overturn Roe v. Wade.

Donna Katzin is the former and founding executive director of Shared Interest, a fund that mobilizes the human and financial resources of low-income communities of color in South and Southern Africa.  A board member of Community Change in the U.S., and co-coordinator of Tipitapa Partners working in Nicaragua, she has written extensively about South Africa, community development and impact investing.  Published in journals and sites including The New Verse News and The Mom Egg, she is the author of With the Hands, a book of poems and photographs about post-apartheid South Africa’s process of giving birth to itself.