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Poem "the Mother"

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In the poem "The Mother", Gwendolyn Brooks talks about a woman who is thinking about the children she never gave birth to. By the way it is written, it seems that the character has had more than one abortion. The woman seems to think of these children often, and they haunt her, for choosing to abort these babies. She states, "I have heard in the voices of the wind the voices of my dim killed children" (line 11). It is apparent that the woman feels regret in the decision to abort her babies. The author seems to be trying to warn women about abortion and that they should not do what she did because it could poison ones sanity.

The mother says, "abortions will never let you forget" (line 1). The mother is remembering the possible images of the children she was never able to meet. Were they boys or girls? Were they attractive or plain? Did they have special talents or abilities that might have enriched this world? She will never know. The children were never allowed to be "singers and workers that never handled the air" (line 4).

Having aborted these babies before they were born, she never gave the attempt to even name her children. This is assumed as she says, "if I stole your births and your names your straight baby tears and games" (line 17-18). The mother never allowed the children to have "...lovely loves, tumults, marriages, aches, and deaths" (line 19-20). We must wonder if the author is looking forward in her dreaming about her children. Does she lament because now there is nobody else to continue her legacy? There is nobody to remember her when she dies and disappears from this world. She does not seem to have given weight to the consequences of her choices to abort the children at the time she made the decision, but now says, "believe that even in my deliberateness I was not deliberate." (line 22). The mother shows great unhappiness and regret in stealing their lives because the children "never giggled or planned or cried" (line 31). The mother regrets not being able to spoil her children or see them; but comforts herself, knowing that they will never be abused or mistreated as shown in the statement "You will never neglect or beat" (line 5). The woman stunted her own growth because while raising children there are problems that arise that must be solved. She missed all of the good times, but she also missed the hard times that force a person to grow as well as grow up. Did she cheat herself out of living and growing as well as her children?

The mother admits having stolen their lives before the children were able to live "You were born, had body, you died." (line 30), yet also confesses her love for each of them "Believe me I loved you all" (line 32). "Believe me, I knew you, though faintly, and I loved, I loved you all" (line 33-34).

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