Because Everyone Loves Babies
This isn’t new. “Back in my day,” my mom says, “we had TB and polio.” Back then life didn’t stop. You took precautions and took your chances. On the farm you understood that death And suffering are a part of life. You didn’t hide from it. Not when there was work to be done. But today things are different Maybe it’s the attitude Maybe today we think we’re above death-by-virus. We think science should conquer everything, and we should all live forever Or at least those close to us, anyway. But death and suffering are part of life now Same as back on the farm. After all, people have to die to make room in the world for babies And everyone loves babies, right? Except . . . the majority of the people dying And suffering are the marginalized. The poor, the elderly, the sick, the disabled. Supplies and proper care are prioritized based on who would “benefit” more from them Or who lives in the nicer neighborhood And as for the working poor and the nurses Well, you can’t hide from it. Not when there’s work to be done. So, maybe this is nature culling weak from the herd, right? There’s an awful lot of people in the world and since everyone loves babies, well . . . Something’s gotta give, right? It’s like Evolution, Survival of the fittest, and all that? Isn’t that the Theory? But nature does not marginalize or prioritize. Nature doesn’t dictate class Or perpetuate income gaps. It’s not nature choosing who’s essential and who’s expendable, is it? It’s us. And that’s right, This isn’t new Because it’s always been us. Watching it happen and being okay with it. Focusing on those closest to us Saying, “life goes on,” Because there’s always babies and we love babies. But we forget that there are marginalized babies, too. Babies born in poverty, Born disabled, Born with tinted skin And those marginalized babies grow into marginalized adults That we easily forget. We feel like we can tell them to take precautions And take their chances Even if their chances aren’t very good. Because life doesn’t stop. Not when there's work to be done. Not when the money’s gotta flow. No Life doesn’t stop Except when it does But no one points that part out.
About the Artist
Darrell Parry, Northampton County
Published: September 6, 2020