September 5, 2010 at 3:04 pm (Uncategorized)

Breathe and sweat,
and breathe and sweat
then relax and wait
nothing to do but wait.
Bright lights,
bare and clinical
alien smells and echoing noises
linger in your unconscious.
A groan comes up
from deep inside
your animal instincts
guide you through the shadows
of unfamiliar sensations.
Time stands still
hours flash by
but minutes drag
holding you in the moment
of each contraction.
The room around melts
into the background
nothing to look at
looking at nothing
concentrating hard on
the strength inside
to take the next one.
Pulsating blood
and contracting muscles
are all that matters now.
The pace intensifies
machines clatter
people gather
instructing, encouraging
you are surrounded
alone in a crowded room.
And just when you think
it is unbearable
that you are too exhausted
to go any further,
it is ended.
And begun.

For the Poetry Bus, driven this week by Pure Fiction, the prompt being to write about ‘transformation’. I went for momentous rather than simple.



  1. Pure Fiction said,

    Love the final line. Your link’s up 🙂

  2. Helen said,

    Perfect description of that transforming moment … I have been blessed to experience it four times …………..

  3. Niamh B said,

    wow, powerful description there cfm
    brilliant, and a bit scary!

  4. jinksy said,

    Birth pangs, indeed! 🙂

  5. Pete said,

    Ah you women, always exaggerating that little bit of discomfort….

  6. Dick said,

    Having witnessed the process that is depicted so powerfully here five times, I shan’t risk having my house firebombed by incandescent mums by risking a reductive gag. I hope no one know where you live, Pete!

  7. karen said,

    Talk about a transformative act! That last line says it all. (The whole poem builds it well.)

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