He pushed through the curtain
before I left the confessional,
thrust himself inside me
and said it was just like loving Jesus.
And I felt the drip in my knickers
as I pulled my wool around my aching breasts
knowing they’d not believe
if I told them, never Father Mike.
Now I’m here on the edge
With his wee bairn, all pale and suckly
Like the milk he’d drain from me
Without e’er a bit o’ me in him.
All Father Mike and you, Jesus,
and if that’s being loved by You
I’ll suffer hell and give
the babe to the deep.
(c) Gay Reiser Cannon
Repost: A response to Seamus Heaney’s Poem Limbo (see below)
and a protest of the Catholic Church’s eternal covering up of rapist priests worldwide.4
Fishermen at Ballyshannon
Netted an infant last night
Along with the salmon.
An illegitimate spawning,
A small one thrown back
To the waters. But I’m sure
As she stood in the shallows
Ducking him tenderly
Till the frozen knobs of her wrists
Were dead as the gravel,
He was a minnow with hooks
Tearing her open.
She waded in under
The sign of the cross.
He was hauled in with the fish.
Now limbo will be
A cold glitter of souls
Through some far briny zone.
Even Christ’s palms, unhealed,
Smart and cannot fish there.