Entry - MAG Poetry Prize 2010

Lament for a Dead Child

by Ann Dubaic

I did not ask to be born;
Got by chance, and the thrill of risk,
Thrust into consciousness by climax and gush
Of public outcry, I am all
That is sick.
What rule did I break, that I
Am broken? What edict transgress,
That I am left in the mess and stench of my
Own excrement, bruised and bloodied,
And alone?
Tossed in a cot, in the dark,
On a lice-ridden mattress, I
Butt at the bars and pluck; and, scratched and spattered,
Slump now into fretful slumber,
And shaken awake in the
Dope-haze of mornings, not fed, but
Fending, I suffer the burn and hurt, moaning,
And ache at your knee, not dandled,
But dangling.
No hug of comfort or love
Is mine, but a kick, a punch, the
Kiss of a fist and the brunt of your pleasure.
I rot in a wailing cage of
Weep then for lost innocence,
While I, who cannot weep, welcome
This first and final embrace with one last rasp
Of breath, and find escape from my
Tainted state.

Added: 15.04.2010