Posted tagged ‘Hobby Lobby Poem’

Hobby Lobbied (2)

July 2, 2014

Christina's pictures 271


Hobby Lobbied (2)

The fact is
they are not
paying for your birth control;
they are paying for
your services.

You sort, you stack, you stand
at counters, sit
at desks, taking grief
and making change
from appointed hour
for many hours.
You climb ladders,  you go
to the back;
you do what you
are asked, within reason, it’s
your job.

Their job
is to pay you-
did you really think
they were giving you something?

The pay of that man who works across from you,
the one who’s super sweet, except for all
the sweat,
includes health care covering his prostate, and also what’s
next to his prostate,
medication for his football injuries and his earlier onset
heart disease–

But birth control–well, the operative word is

They think the world was better
when you were more firmly under

As if you work
just to feel freer.
(Yeah, from debt).

As if–
if they can just pay you less–
like they have
for so many years–
the world will turn back
into something it never actually was.
They think that world was something they liked
because they were so much smaller when they imagine
it to have existed,
and they felt safe
when they were small
and knew little.

Another Hobby Lobby poem–sorry to be on a rant.  I’ve actually written a poem on a completely different subject, which I’ll likely post later tonight/tomorrow. 

But this case is still on my mind and I expect on many people’s.  My Hobby Lobby 1 poem may be found here.  The photograph above is by Christina Martin. 



Hobby Lobbied

June 30, 2014
Johannes Vermeer, "Woman Holding a Balance",  around 1665

Johannes Vermeer, “Woman Holding a Balance”, around 1665

Hobby Lobbied

Amazingly close to the date she gave birth, my mother,
who never showed,
applied for a job.
She held a large purse
over that part of her
that was me
because her soon-to-be employer
automatically paid new mothers
substantially reduced pay,
whether or not they missed
a single workday.

When she started the job,
three months after I was born,
my mother kept mum about me
for more than a year, not alluding to my
existence all day, any day,
so that she would be paid
in full.

The employer believed, see,
that new mothers
should stay at home.
I’d like to believe that my mother
would have stayed home if she could,
but the fact is
my mother needed to work
for the money
and for more than
the money.

But my mother’s needs are not wholly the point
of this poem.
The point, which I would like to be sharper
than any knitting needle–certainly sharp enough
to pierce the corporate veil–is that I–and every woman I know–
have been affected by this crap since
before we were even born.

Employers are not
intrauterine devices.

Corporations are formed
to make money, my friend,
and to limit the losses of
those making it,
while women are formed for more
than making
as wonderful as
they are, as lost as we would be
without them.

Here’s a poem of sorts written in reaction to the Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby decision today.  (The photo above if of a painting by Johannes Vermeer, woman holding a balance.)    I think it’s bad law;  I commend Ruth Bader Ginsburg, for her intelligent and spirited dissent.