Wednesday, May 30, 2007

The Infertile Lament

We are infertile, you and I,

With broken hearts and few choices left to try

We have been the patient etherised upon a table;

We have travelled, through certain half-deserted dreams,

Of devastating negatives

Of restless nights and fading positives

And hopeful starts with grating missives:

Conversations that follow like a tedious argument

Of increasingly tragic intent

To lead us to an overwhelming decision …

We do not need to ask, “What is it?”

We just go and make our visit.

In the room the scientists come and go

Talking of blastocysts, we know.

And indeed there will be time

For the fears and hopes that slide along the years,

Inflicting despair and determination in doses;

There will be time, there will be time

To prepare a treatment to match the bloods and scans;

There will be time to trigger and time to plan,

And time for all the injections and alarms of maybe

That allow yet another hope to penetrate our heart;

Time for you and time for me,

And time yet for a hundred indecisions,

And for a hundred visions and revisions,

Before the taking of a dose or three.

In the room the nurses come and go

Talking of HCG, we know.

And indeed there will be time

To wonder, “Do we dare?” and, “Do we care?”

Time to turn back and cry in despair,

With a fear born of the possibility so rare —

[They will say: “It’s real, the journey has now begun”]

Our disbelief, followed swiftly by a mood so glum,

Now what do we do, that we have a race to run—

[They will say: “Just be happy, relax!”]

Do we dare

Disturb this universe?

That we have known so well

For results and positives that could so easily reverse.

For we have known them all already, known them all:—

Have known the evenings, mornings, afternoons,

We have measured out our cycles with syringe platoons;

We might be lucky and hear those fateful words

Beneath the thumping heartbeat sweating in our phone.

But can a positive ever heal this wound?

Because we are infertile, you and I,

A growing belly might stem the flow,

But our heart will always hold this stone.

That success will only partially hold

Cradled safe in the hand of hope.


At 10:54 pm, Anonymous Kath said...

That was beautifully done -- both witty and poignant. I am incredibly impressed. Truly worthy of Eliot!

At 11:28 pm, Anonymous Meg said...

You're a clever girl, Stella. Prufrock is one of my favourite poems.

At 1:26 am, Blogger Zee said...

Wonderful, Stella! A fine and poignant parody of one of my favorites. Brava! (Can you tell I used to write copy for a snobby book catalog?)

Since I've been jolted out of lurk mode, I just want to say that I'm hoping all is well with you--and that the angst expressed in this poem is only literary device.

At 8:34 am, Blogger Beagle said...

Well said!

At 2:21 pm, Blogger Bea said...

Beautifully expressed.


At 1:56 pm, Blogger Mony said...

An infertile knows every line. Very clever words.

At 12:47 am, Anonymous Meg said...

Update, Stella??


At 5:48 pm, Blogger Thalia said...

stella I hope your PhD is done and you're getting ready to welcome your new arrival in ?10 weeks or so? HOpe all is well


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