子宮内生命尊重の俳句・短歌 (Haiku and Tanka Respecting In-Utero Life)

By Stephanie Midori Komashin

2nd Place, Poetry, Create | Encounter 2021


Poems will be written in the Japanese hiragana first, then Japanese rōmaji, then the English translation. Haiku syllables are 5, 7, 5 and tanka syllables are 5, 7, 5, 7, 7 in the Japanese.



子宮の子

細胞分裂

えらいよね


Shikyuu no ko,

saiboubunretsu

erai yo ne.


Child in child’s palace,*

your cell division

so impressively capable!


* The Japanese word for “uterus” [子宮] literally means “child’s palace” [子+宮].



胸キュン!

御利巧ちゃんの

心音だ


Munekyun!

O-rikou-chan no

shinoto da!


My chest tightens (from emotion)!

It’s the sound of the heartbeat

of my well-behaved, clever little one!



To children separated by miscarriage:


お付き合い

短時間でも

ありがとう


Otsukiai,

tanjikan demo,

arigatou.


For keeping me company,

even for a brief time,

arigato.



皆の価値

遺伝子なんて

無関係

掛け替えのない

貴重な命


Mina no kachi

idenshi nante

mukankei.

Kakegae no nai,

kichou na inochi.


Everyone’s value

has zero relationship

to anything like genes.

Irreplaceable,

invaluable lives.



必要の

ない人間は

いないんだ

唯一の胎児

ヒトは皆人


Hitsuyou no

nai ningen ha

inain da.

Yuitsu no taiji,

hito ha mina hito.


An unnecessary

human:

there aren’t any.

Utterly unique fetuses:

all humans are persons.




Artist Statement:

After experiencing miscarriage, I have heard and read many unintentionally inconsiderate, as well as intentionally impolite, comments made to me and fellow members of the baby loss community, each of which seem to convey a sociocultural view that overlooks or minimizes the uniqueness and irreplacability of humans in utero. This, in turn, exponentially increases isolation and pain for the born people who love and miss them. Sadly, many people devalue human lives by misconstruing them as disorganized and undeveloped rather than intricate and self-directed, by suppressing accurate sexual education and body literacy so that women find themselves surprised to hear an embryo’s heartbeat, by considering earlier miscarriages less tragic than later ones or claiming that a particular baby can be replaced by subsequent siblings, by pressuring parents to abort based on prenatal testing results, or by expressing that certain existing humans are unneeded on this planet. I have aimed to express that, in reality, nobody can replace or make up for the loss of another because every individual human life is equally valuable, and to communicate this through a Japanese linguocultural perspective. Out of my own experience, and in response to a differently-abled person questioning, “Are we really unnecessary humans?”, I hope that these words hearten those who have been hurt by callousness, rudeness, and even verbal abuse from medical professionals, well-meaning relatives and friends, and discourteous strangers.

Disclaimer: The views presented in the Rehumanize Blog do not necessarily represent the views of all members, contributors, or donors. We exist to present a forum for discussion within the Consistent Life Ethic, to promote discourse and present an opportunity for peer review and dialogue.