24 March 2006

SD abortion law: an affront to all independent women

"When Governor Mike Rounds signed HB 1215 into law it effectively banned all abortions in the state with the exception that it did allow saving the mother’s life. There were, however, no exceptions for victims of rape or incest. His actions, and the comments of State Senators like Bill Napoli of Rapid City, SD, set of a maelstrom of protests within the state.

Napoli suggested that if it was a case of “simple rape,” there should be no thoughts of ending a pregnancy. Letters by the hundreds appeared in local newspapers, mostly written by women, challenging Napoli’s description of rape as “simple.” He has yet to explain satisfactorily what he meant by “simple rape.”

The President of the Oglala Sioux Tribe on the Pine Ridge Reservation, Cecilia Fire Thunder, was incensed. A former nurse and healthcare giver she was very angry that a state body made up mostly of white males, would make such a stupid law against women.
“To me, it is now a question of sovereignty,” she said to me last week. “I will personally establish a Planned Parenthood clinic on my own land which is within the boundaries of the Pine Ridge Reservation where the State of South Dakota has absolutely no jurisdiction.”

Strong words from a very strong lady. I hope Ms. Fire Thunder challenges Gov. Rounds and the state legislators on this law that is an affront to all independent women."

Oglala Sioux president on state abortion law

22 March 2006


The tragedy was in my eyes
en route from left to right
the usual routine
tracking, placing surroundings

The tragedy was in her posture
proud, hopeful
bloomed tall, despite youth’s best attempts
to keep her forever innocent

The tragedy was in three middle-aged men
On a business casual Friday, Tag Heurers gleamed
in the metallic saffron sunset reflection,
offhandedly discussing the weekend’s plans
paused mid-discussion

The tragedy was in a pitch
A horn splat of B-flat, C, F-sharp
Sustained into echoed crescendo
Curled like tendriled vines into my ears

The tragedy was in a new book
crisp unbroken spine
Arched unnaturally above a slender upraised arm
Shredded pages hovered momentarily,
hundreds of small earthquakes
poised to thunder their doom

The tragedy was in our gasps


The tragedy was that
We each breathed our final goodbyes
without having seen a tragedy coming

20 March 2006


double-dipping by McBeth.

*no thin healthy women were harmed in the shooting of this image.

ashes to ponies

“So, like a forgotten fire, a childhood can always flare up again within us.”
- Gaston Barchelard

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