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Original artwork by Lance Dornan

The Matrix of Living in America

Adele Evershed
Our Bodies, Our Rights: Special Issue • Poetry

the redness / sharp pains and dissolution / the work of only half an hour / and after they

tell you / not to grieve / the loss / or think too much about the rape victim / and the child

forced to have a child


there will still be beauty / and there is always wine / so in seclusion / behind the folding

doors / your intellect remains / and you send for a pill / just in case / as if you were living

in The Matrix / where choice was a problem too


once you weighed the importance of the thing / between your fingers / plan A / or plan B

/ a maybe life / or the bliss of a blue never knowing / you bet on red / and when you saw

the blood / like a strawberry moon / you didn’t know whether to laugh or cry


but it was you that made the choice / now in tall and narrow rooms / vividly red /

shrouded with tapestries / hung to block any light / they shout / they’ve rewound the

ebony clock / so time can fly backward 


glaring and fantastical / don’t expect them to talk / of the suffering of women / they are

not interested in the plight of the born / they leave you only one emotion / rage / you

wonder if that’s all women can do / suffer and rage / suffer and age


so the blood-colored foot falls of the night / whirl on / we have fought all this before / and

tired though we are / we will still hang a sunrise at our windows / and claw back our

rights / to quote Morpheus / it is not a matter of hope / just a matter of time