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Psalms of an Infertile Woman

Posted May 12 2009 6:15pm
I need your help. The liturgical dance group that I belong to will be doing movement to a series of psalms for the Christ the King Mass (November 23). Because I have a new baby, it was suggested last week that I move to the psalm of the unwed mother. Although I knew I could do it, I kept thinking about a psalm for the infertile woman instead. Today I suggested it and everyone agreed.

Here is where I could use some help. I need to come up with about 30 seconds that can be read aloud while I move to it. All the psalms are from the same book so they have a similar feel which I would like to emulate. Below is the original one to give you a sense of the feel. And by "feel" I mean it pretty loosely. Had I chosen to use the original, I would have had to pare it down to 30 seconds which is a little more than half.

I encourage any and all suggestions. This is a very liberal Catholic church (we once had a female play the part of God and she gave birth to all the animals for Easter) so be as creative as you like. You could submit a stanza or an entire set of stanzas. Thanks in advance!

The original:

No Raphael will paint me:
a mother with child,
but without a husband,
clutching a welfare check
with a babe in my arm.

No Botticelli background
behind this mother and child;
the bleak walls of public housing
rather than a hidden, luminous light.
No singing angels cluster
around my head.

Half-a-home, half-a-wife
and less than half-a-life:
a poor single parent
who holds in her lap
a condemned child.

Yes, condemned to live
an entire life in poverty,
so too my grandchildren,
and great grandchildren,
forever prisoners
of the lowest class.

No Michelangelo will carve me
holding the dead body of my son:
shot by police,
dead on drugs,
a victim of a gang war.

I am the sorrowful Madonna.
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