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songs about abortion

Susan Lerner 12 Sep 97 - 04:41 AM
12 Sep 97 - 06:04 AM
Frank in the swamps 12 Sep 97 - 07:03 AM
Laoise 12 Sep 97 - 07:19 AM
LaMarca 12 Sep 97 - 10:46 AM
Bruce 12 Sep 97 - 02:50 PM
Tim Jaques tjaques@netcom.ca 12 Sep 97 - 05:55 PM
Susan of DT 12 Sep 97 - 06:25 PM
Susan of DT 12 Sep 97 - 06:31 PM
Bruce 12 Sep 97 - 06:58 PM
Moira Cameron, moirakc@internorth.com 13 Sep 97 - 03:06 AM
rich r 13 Sep 97 - 09:20 AM
bert 15 Sep 97 - 09:04 AM
LaMarca 15 Sep 97 - 05:34 PM
Frank in the swamps 15 Sep 97 - 06:57 PM
rich r 15 Sep 97 - 08:27 PM
Bert 16 Sep 97 - 11:12 AM
Alice 19 Sep 97 - 01:43 AM
Bruce 19 Sep 97 - 01:03 PM
Susan of DT 19 Sep 97 - 07:15 PM
Alice 19 Sep 97 - 09:38 PM
Earl 22 Sep 97 - 03:05 PM
Wkailey 22 Sep 97 - 05:57 PM
Tim Jaques tjaques@netcom.ca 22 Sep 97 - 07:57 PM
Susan of DT 23 Sep 97 - 07:03 PM
GUEST,Anonymous 09 Dec 02 - 05:40 AM
wilco 09 Dec 02 - 11:23 AM
GUEST,rose- faery_rose@angelfire.com 09 Dec 02 - 11:35 AM
open mike 09 Dec 02 - 11:37 AM
GUEST,daylia 09 Dec 02 - 11:37 AM
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Art Thieme 09 Dec 02 - 11:52 AM
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wilco 10 Dec 02 - 10:39 AM
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Subject: songs about abortion
From: Susan Lerner
Date: 12 Sep 97 - 04:41 AM

For a research project that I am doing, I would appreciate any information on folk songs (traditional or composed) dealing with abortion and unwanted pregnancy. I'm also interested in any recordings of such songs. Thanks. Please feel free to email me directly at Meydele@ix.netcom.com

Susan Lerner


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From:
Date: 12 Sep 97 - 06:04 AM

Check out the songs, "My Body" and "Still Ain"t Satisfied" in the songbook called Rise Up Singing. See also the following references in The Mudcat Discussion Forum:

Annie Talley RE: FOLK SONGS TO DITCH 10-Jun-97 and
Jack RE: Parody Folk Circle I 20-Aug-97


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Frank in the swamps
Date: 12 Sep 97 - 07:03 AM

Susan,

I'm not acquainted with any traditional songs about abortion, but unwanted pregnancy is an all too common theme in folksong. "The Cruel Mother" is a chilly tale of infanticide, and there are countless songs of women abandoned with children, "The Dear Companion" from Cecil Sharp's collection is a favourite of mine, Also in Sharp's collection, "I'm a Day Too Young", "No My Love not I", which includes the deliciously wicked verse..

The best thing I can advise for you to do, Is to take your baby on your back and a begging for to go, And when that you are weary love, you may sit down and cry and curse the very hour that you said, not I my love, not I. 'The Cruel Ship's Carpenter" tells of a fellow who leads a girl astray, then knifes the poor wretch.In American folksongs that came over from Britain, references to pregnancy are often deleted ( damn puritans!) but if a young man is inexplicably killing his darlin'....

It ain't folksong, but the Sex Pistols did an incredible song about abortion, I don't remember the title, but it's on their album "Never mind the bollocks". I never could make out all the lyrics, noisy stuff, but I recall lines like..

In a plastic packet in a lavatory,

illegitimate place to be,

Bloody little baby, screaming, mummy, I'm not an animal, it's an abortion. Also..

She don't want a baby that looks like that.

Good uh, hunting??? Frank.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Laoise
Date: 12 Sep 97 - 07:19 AM

There's also the one about incest if this could be included in your thesis - The Well Below the Valley-O, where the maiden in the tale has had several children by her brothers, Uncles and Father and has them all buried in wierd places. I know people who refuse to sing it because of the meaning of the song.

Laoise.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: LaMarca
Date: 12 Sep 97 - 10:46 AM

In most of the traditional songs that I know, an unwanted pregnancy is dealt with by killing the pregnant mother, or by post-natal killing of the child. Some other examples of this (in addition to the ones listed above) are:

The Green Willow Tree - English song in which a woman follows her lover to sea, bears baby on board ship and both are thrown overboard by said lover
Banks of the Ohio - American murder ballad where pregnancy usually isn't specifically mentioned as the reason for the girl's murder by her "true" love
Banks of Red Roses - Irish song with same plot as "Banks of the Ohio".
Cousin Joe - grim little English song, recorded by Nic Jones, where young woman deserts her lover to have a fling with Cousin Joe, gets pregnant, attempts to file a paternity suit against original boyfriend, and hangs herself when she loses the suit and can't support the child
Sheath and Knife, Queen Jane - two English ballads about incest, in which the brother kills the pregnant sister to prevent the shame becoming public.
The Month of January, Mary On the Wild Moor - two songs (both Irish?) in which the father casts the pregnant daughter out from the home. In "January", she is singing sadly about her plight; in "Mary", she and the baby die at the barred door of the family home.
The Maid Ga'ed Tae the Mill - Scottish bawdy song about young woman indulging in a fling with the miller and its consequences. Contains verses about the parents' reaction to her baby - one tells her to "cast it out" and the other to raise it in joy.
Underneath Her Apron - English song, again mildly comic, about a very young girl concealing her pregnancy from her family, which is very surprised when the child is born.

All these are traditional. One recently written funny song about birth control is "Bridget and the Pill", where the good Irish Catholic girl Bridget goes up the church hierarchy all the way to the Pope, seeking permission to stop having babies, and finally tells the Church to bugger off and gets herself a prescription.

Some of these are probably in the Digital Tradition database in one form or another; if there's any here you're interested in that you can't find, I'll dig up the words or give you a source.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Bruce
Date: 12 Sep 97 - 02:50 PM

Where is English "Underneath her Apron"? I lost my copy and reference to it a few years ago and haven't been able to relocate it. A much earlier version: "The rowin't in her apron", Scots Musical Museum, #424.

John Glen said, 'Early Scottish Melodies', p. 231, that there was a version of the SMM tune as "Under her Apron" in the McFarlane MSS c 1740. (3 vols. Vol. 1 borrowed in 1806, and never returned. Remaining are NLS MS 2084, 2085. This is one of several compliations of Scots tunes by David Young, but to the best of my knowledge not printed, and no index available.)

Compare with "Willie o Winsbury".


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Tim Jaques tjaques@netcom.ca
Date: 12 Sep 97 - 05:55 PM

UNFORTUNATE LASS, in the database.

It is similar to Young Girl Cut Down In Her Prime sung by PEI singer Teresa Doyle, and to any number of that type of song that I call 'beat the drums slowly" songs. Usually there is something about who is to carry the coffin, strew the roses, etc.

Then there's Oh No, Not I, which was done by Doyle and also by Stan Rogers -- "take the child upon your back and a beggin' you may go." I think the "green willow" reference in that song is to an abortion attempt ("Don't ever put your trust in the green willow tree")

I seem to recall reading in Annie Proulx's Shipping News that someone attempted an abortion by this method. The song and the book are set in Newfoundland. (Great book, BTW, both dark and amusing)

However in All Around My Hat the reference to green willow seems to be as a remembrance for a far-away lover, so I don't know. Can any folk herbalists enlighten me?


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Susan of DT
Date: 12 Sep 97 - 06:25 PM

Susan - I saw your query on the ballad list and replied to the person who sent it in (I can't seem to 'reply all" onmy current system) and was goin to send you a more researched response to your email.

Tamlin for abortion Bonny Hind, Sheathe and Knife, Lizzie Wan, King's Dochter Jean for incest/murder (child 16, 50,51,52) Cruel Mother, Mary Hamilton It goes on and on and on - nice list, LaMarca

Bruce - "Underneath her Apron" is in the DT


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Susan of DT
Date: 12 Sep 97 - 06:31 PM

also try @baby @deadbaby and @bastard not all songs will apply, but many will


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Bruce
Date: 12 Sep 97 - 06:58 PM

Thanks Susan, I even have Lloyd's book, but didn't think to look there.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Moira Cameron, moirakc@internorth.com
Date: 13 Sep 97 - 03:06 AM

The only traditional song I know that specifically mentions abortion is Tamlin. The lyrics in the version I sing refer to abortion when she finds herself pregnant--

Then up and spoke another serving girl; "Ever and alas!" said she; "I think I know a herb in the merry green wood, That'll twine your babe from thee, Lady."

So Margaret's taken up her silver comb; Made haste to comb her hair; And she's away to the merry green wood As fast as she can tear, can tear...

But she hadn't pulled a herb in that merry green wood-- A herb but barely one-- When by her stood young Tamlin Saying, "Margaret, leave it alone, my love..."

"Oh why do you pull that bitter little herb, That herb that grows so grey, To take away that sweet babe's life, That we got in our play, my dear?"

etc.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: rich r
Date: 13 Sep 97 - 09:20 AM

There is a relatively recent song called "Mary McGill" by Kim Wallick that deals with the modern scene of clinic protests and women's choice. It is fairly long. I will have to dig it out and enter it when I can.

rich r


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: bert
Date: 15 Sep 97 - 09:04 AM

There is also the verse of "My God how the money rolls in"

My Uncle's a Harley Street surgeon
with instruments pointed and thin
He only does one operation
My God how the money rolls in.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: LaMarca
Date: 15 Sep 97 - 05:34 PM

Bert, that reminded me of another version of the same song:

My mother makes cheap prophylactics
She pokes in each end with a pin
My father does quickie abortions
My God, how the money rolls in!


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Frank in the swamps
Date: 15 Sep 97 - 06:57 PM

I fathered a poor little bastard/ The runt is both stupid and thin/ Don't blame it me and my whiskey/ It's the mother who kept drinking gin.

Allright, so I made up that horrid little rhyme myself, but here is an interesting tidbit. I don't know if this fits in with your research project, but an old wives trick for inducing abortions in Scotland in the late 1950's involved sitting on buckets on boiling hot gin, and drinking the stuff. I don't know how widespread the idea was, but it was certainly tried in my case. My Aunt gave me the dirt on this one time. For those of you who might be a bit slow, let me add....

It doesn't work.. 'hic, Frank.


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Subject: Lyr Add: MARY McGILL^^
From: rich r
Date: 15 Sep 97 - 08:27 PM

MARY McGILL sung by Kim Walleck (I'm not 100% certain she also wrote it)

In a clinic on Main Street in Washingtonville/ Lost in thought by a window stood Mary McGill/ When her eyes met the eyes of a woman outside/ Was it rain on her glasses or tears she had cried/ Outside on the picket line Rose Mary Flynn/ Felt the rain on her face and the anger within/ As she stared at the rface inside, gentle and warm/ That seemed almost to beckon her in from the storm.

And the two women found themselves staring awhile/ Recognition, awareness but never a smile/ And there seemed to be some kind of truce in that stare/ Until Rose Mary Flynn recalled why she was there/ The she held up her sign that said "Thou shalt not kill"/ And she pointed directly at Mary McGill/ And Mary McGill before starting to turn/ Gave a nod to acknowledge Rome Mary's concern.

That day Mary counselled a child named Michelle/ Who tried hard to seem calm in her personal hell/ Mary spoke to MIchelle with the tone of a friend/ And her gentleness brought Michelle's calm to an end/ Michelle told her story with pain hard to hide/ Of her mother and John and the new life inside/ She had meant to show love, she had meant no one harm/ But her mother felt anger and John felt alarm

But the new life inside was a life, it was real/ With a brain and a heartbeat she thought she could feel/ And she wanted the child she would love it so well/ But she'd end the new life for her mother and John/ I'll do it Michelle said for my mother and John/ These words had an emptiness Mary saw through/ If you do it said Mary, pleased do it for you/ Michelle only murmured the words "I don't know"/ And she stood and she turned and she started to go/ And Mary made one last request of Michelle/ With her parting words "Take time to think this out well"

that night Michelle's mother stormed into the place/ Not hiding her anger, yet hiding her face/ My daughter came here with a purpose she said/ Not to have you put foolish ideas in her head / She's too young, she's a girl, and the father's a boy/ And she thinks that a baby is some kind of toy/ Your job was to teach her, to straighten her out/ NOt confuse her and send her home riddled with doubt.

My job explained mary was not to confuse/ But to make her aware of her freedom to choose/ My job is to make sure the options are known/ You are right she is young, but her life is her own/ Then mary saw something in this woman's face/ And remembered the person, the time and the place/ This woman had labelled abortion a sin/ The face on the picket line, Rose Mary Flynn.

People often accuse and are quick to condemn/ When the issue is safe and does not affect them/ I don't envy the job facing Mary McGill/ I don't know all the meanings of "Thou shalt not kill"/ It's a conflict more simply prevented than solved/ But the choice must belong to the woman involved/ And I think that the answers come not from above/ But from us and our consciences tempered with love.

rich r


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Bert
Date: 16 Sep 97 - 11:12 AM

Frank,

The Old Wives Tale in England is to dring Gin and Nutmeg.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Alice
Date: 19 Sep 97 - 01:43 AM

Ian and Sylvia recorded "The Woman From York". She fell in love with her father's clerk, gives birth to twins in the woods, kills them with a penknife, then meets them "playing at ball" on the way back to her father's hall. "Oh babes, oh babes, it's heaven for you... mother, oh mother it's hell for you..." The formula repeats itself in another Scottish version, including dressing the babes in scarlet, a symbol of blood.

Alice


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Bruce
Date: 19 Sep 97 - 01:03 PM

Several exelent Scots versions of "Under her Apron" are just published in Vol. 7 of 'The Greig-Duncan Folk Song Collection', #1493.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Susan of DT
Date: 19 Sep 97 - 07:15 PM

Alice - that is the Cruel Mother. look up "#20" for several versions


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Alice
Date: 19 Sep 97 - 09:38 PM

Susan... yes, the Cruel Mother, my brain was bouncing in many directions at once. Last Sunday night after the session here, another singer and I were singing all the versions of cruel sister and cruel mother that we know. Whenever someone sings the Well Below the Valley, it leads into Weela Wallia or vice versa, then all the infanticide songs. The Fanaid Grove fits into the theme, as well.

Alice in Montana


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Earl
Date: 22 Sep 97 - 03:05 PM

The database has two versions "Pearl Bryan" about the murder and decapitation of a young girl. It is a true story of a botched abortion by two dental students in 1896. They administered too much cocaine as an anesthetic which killed her. They cut off her head to try to prevent identification. The body was identified anyway and both were hanged. Pearl's lover, who arranged the abortion, was never tried.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Wkailey
Date: 22 Sep 97 - 05:57 PM

In addition to those listed by LaMarca, there are many Irish songs about unwanted pregnancy. One I like as well as any (for I don't really like any of them) is The Gentleman Soldier. It starts

There was a gentleman soldier At a sentry he did stand. He saluted a fair maid. Will you wait and have his hand? So boldy then he kissed her, And he passed it off as a joke. He drilled her up on the sentry box For drubbing the soldier's coat. . . . In the end, the gentleman soldier turns out to have a wife and three kids, and Molly "had a little malitia boy, and she didn't know his name."


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Tim Jaques tjaques@netcom.ca
Date: 22 Sep 97 - 07:57 PM

Wkailey, that song was done by the Pogues on one of their CD's. I don't have the lyrics handy but someone with the CD should be able to find it.

I don't know if I would say that I dislike all songs about unwanted pregnancies. The Four Marys is a wonderful song.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Susan of DT
Date: 23 Sep 97 - 07:03 PM

Wkailey - See "The Sentry Box" in the DT


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,Anonymous
Date: 09 Dec 02 - 05:40 AM

Ani Difranco - Lost Woman Song


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: wilco
Date: 09 Dec 02 - 11:23 AM

At some point in time, this period of abortion will be viewed historically as a huge holocaust of unprecedented proportions. Future generations will wonder how their ancestors allowed it to happen, much like slavery or the Jewish Holocaust of WWII.
   The memorable "abortion" songs will be about the litle ones who were lost, slaughtered and murdered.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,rose- faery_rose@angelfire.com
Date: 09 Dec 02 - 11:35 AM

a modern one is "brick", by ben folds five.
on "green willow tree"- willow bark contains a chemical almost exactly like aspirin. i don't know if it would cause a miscarriage. are pregnant women warned not to take aspirin?


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: open mike
Date: 09 Dec 02 - 11:37 AM

i can't believe no one has mentioned this one:

CARELESS LOVE

Love, oh love, oh careless love,
Love, oh love, oh careless love,
Oh it's love, oh love, oh careless love
You see what careless love has done.

Once I wore my apron low
Once I wore my apron low
Oh it's once I wore my apron low,
You'd follow me through rain and snow.

Now I wear my apron high
Now I wear my apron high
Oh it's now I wear my apron high,
You'll see my door and pass it by.

I cried last night and the night before,
I cried last night and the night before,
Oh I cried last night and the night before,
Going to cry tonight and cry no more.

Love, oh love, oh careless love,
Love, oh love, oh careless love,
Oh it's love, oh love, oh careless love
You see what careless love has done.

-----------------------------------------------------------------

Traditional

An old and widely sung lament, known also as Kelly's Love.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,daylia
Date: 09 Dec 02 - 11:37 AM

wilco48 - have you no compassion for women at all?

Try listening to Joni Mitchell's "The Magdalene Laundries" on her album "Turbulent Indigo". And for insight into what often drives women to such difficult and tragic choices, try "Not to Blame" on the same album.

They always bring me to tears. I've always liked Joni, but for the sake of my emotional health I have to take her realism in measured doses.

Good luck with your paper, Susan.

daylia


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: nutty
Date: 09 Dec 02 - 11:48 AM

Vin Garbutt wrote an very contraversial anti-abortion song in the 1970's on his Album 'Little Innocents'. It caused quite a stir on the folk scene and many clubs refused to book him.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Art Thieme
Date: 09 Dec 02 - 11:52 AM

My old friend Cathy Fink used to do an AMAZING version of "Dink's Song" that is rally a ballad on this subject/topic. She never put it on a record. I'm pretty sure I have a recording of it from a song-swap we did together at Chicao's old No Exit Coffeehouse back in the 70s---but I don't know what her feelings'd be on having it out there now. I could check with her if you wish!? Too bad, I just got a call from her and Marcy and Ella Jenkins last night. Sure was good to talk to 'em.

Art Thieme


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 09 Dec 02 - 01:38 PM

That Vin Garbutt song was "Little Innocents" - a powerful one too, and it's cost him an awful lot over the years, in all kind of ways. I remember when I first heard him sing it before an unsuspecting crowd at a Cambridge Folk Festival. "Here's a Civil Rights song" he said, and launched into song:

...'An unfamiliar freedom now belongs to common man
It's hard for us to say "No thanks", we're told "You can, you can."
We've evn won the right that evil rich men always had,
It seems forbideen fruit is priceless evcen when it's bad.
So let's scrutinise the package deal we're offered,
Like anti-nuclear save the whale, abortion on demand.
We may feel we're so liberal and enlightened
Like him who to defend his rights did napalm Vietnam'...
With six more verses going over the ground.

And when he ended there was a stunned silence, and then half the crowd burst into applause, and the other half didn't.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,Claymore
Date: 09 Dec 02 - 02:18 PM

A friend of mine, Mary Dailey, wrote an anti-abortion song "Little One" which is featured on her CD, "Beginnings". It approaches the issue from the unborn childs viewpoint. Some of the verses:


Am I real, who can say,
That's the center of debate,
Poised in a precarious place,
Waitng to be born...

I'm a strong and healthy girl,
Hidden like a precious pearl,
Separate from the outside world,
About to be discovered...

They sure had a lot of fun,
But when all is said and done,
I'm the real unlucky one,
Disgarded by the way...

I am happy at least for now,
Floating on a summers cloud,
Not knowing what it is to doubt,
That everything is good...



There are more verses but I don't remember them. Mary is one of the most gentle persons I know, and rarely sings this song in public. But, while Mary knows I disagree with her on this issue, her viewpoint is worth thinking about, and the song itself is beautiful.

(In the interest of full disclosure, I play some autoharp solos on two of the songs on the CD, and the "Second Best Fiddler on the Planet", Sharon Hall, plays on several others). If you want more info, you could write her at 235 Mountain Lake Road, Hedgesville, WV 25427 or give her a call at (304) 754-6044.

Incidently, I think her song "'Till It Overflows", is the best song I've heard on the spate of high school shootings (Columbine, etc.), we had several years ago.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: InOBU
Date: 09 Dec 02 - 04:24 PM

Not a song... but a folk tale, (no offence ye Evangelicals...) but Numbers oh about 6 - 11 describes an abortion performed by Priests, bitter water which makes the child wither in the womb, etc... King James edition, modern translations tend to water down the immage.
Cheers
Larry


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: wilco
Date: 09 Dec 02 - 06:08 PM

Guest daylia speculated in an above posting that a pro-life position indicated a lack of "compassion" for women. This compassion apparently doesn't extend to the little unborn women; you're not supposed to have compassion for those soft, precious little babies.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,maureen
Date: 09 Dec 02 - 08:31 PM

Phyl Lobl from Sydney in Australia wrote the broadmeadow thistle.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Jon Bartlett
Date: 10 Dec 02 - 04:42 AM

What about "I Am a Friend of the Foetus"?


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: DG&D Dave
Date: 10 Dec 02 - 06:05 AM

Vin Garbut's "Little Inocents" has at least 3 anti-abortion songs on it.

Whilst I disagree with the sentiments expressed in most of his material, they are well writen and superbly sung.

Dave.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Bagpuss
Date: 10 Dec 02 - 06:32 AM

Not traditional (I don't think), but Middle of the Island by Christy Moore and Sinead O'Connor might be worth a listen.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Bagpuss
Date: 10 Dec 02 - 06:39 AM

Middle of the Island lyrics

Everybody knew - nobody said.
A week ago last Tuesday
She was just fifteen years,
When she reached her full term,
She went to a grotto,
Just a field,
In the middle of the island,
To deliver herself,
Her baby died,
She died,
A week ago last Tuesday.

It was a sad, slow, stupid death for them both,
Everybody knew - nobody said,

A week ago last Tuesday.
At a grotto,
In a field,
In the middle of the island.

Everybody knew - nobody said.
Christy Moore / Nigel Rolfe


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Fay
Date: 10 Dec 02 - 08:56 AM

There's one on a Peggy Seeger album, I presume written by her, I don't know the title, but have some lyrics in my head....

I don't want the bot with the long brown hair,
I don't want the boy with curls,
I want Jimmy and the devil may care
Cause Jimmy's good with the girls.

Just remembered, it's called The Judges Chair - quite a contempoary song written in the folk style.

Good luck.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: nutty
Date: 10 Dec 02 - 09:32 AM

Here's a song published in the early 70's in the book of Bawdy British Folk Songs by Tony McCarthy. .... Definitely a song of its time

Sex and the Single Girl

When I came to Town it got me down
There was no-one that I knew
Till I met Pete, who was kind and sweet
And told me what to do

Chorus
I've tried jumping up and down
I've laced my baths with gin
But it's harder far to get it out
Than it was to put it in

Pete never told me of the ring
The cream or else the cup
Said 'Dont take fright, It'll be all right
If you do it standing up'

So I loved Pete all in the street
And up against the wall
He said 'Just cough when you've had enough
And I swear you'll never fall'

Now truth to tell it all went well
Though I was worried in May
And got in a state, I was well past my date
And didn't know what he'd say

Oh I don't want to be married yet
I don't want to be a wife
And I know he'd have thought that he'd been caught
If I'd tied him down for life
    So I tried jumping up and down
    And laced my baths with gin
    But it was harder far to get it out
    Than it was to get it in

(c)Tony McCarthy September 1971


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,daylia
Date: 10 Dec 02 - 10:35 AM

wilco48

Calling embryos and foetuses "little unborn women" and "soft precious little babies" is inflammatory and slants the truth, in my opinion. They are neither. They are embryos and foetuses.

Having compassion for women in tragic dilemnas does not prevent one from having compassion for foetuses and embryos. But it DOES help to BALANCE one's understanding of this controversial and painful issue.

And it goes a long way in encouraging one to develop the rare ability to "Judge not, and ye shall not be judged". Like the old saying goes, don't judge a man (or a woman) till you've walked a mile in their moccasins.

Maybe this will help.


"I was an unmarried girl
I'd just turned twenty-seven
When they sent me to the sisters
For the way men looked at me.
Branded as a jezebel,
I knew I was not bound for Heaven
I'd be cast in shame
Into the Magdalene Laundries.

Most girls come here pregnant
Some by their own fathers.
Bridget got that belly
From her parish priest.
We're trying to get things white as snow,
All of us woe-begotten daughters,
In the steaming stains
Of the Magdalene Laundries.

Prostitutes and destitutes
And temptresses like me
Fallen women-
Sentenced into dreamless drudgery ...
Why do they call this heartless place
Our Lady of Charity?
Oh charity!

These bloodless brides of Jesus,
If they'd just once glimpsed their Groom,
Then they'd know; and they'd drop the stones
Concealed behind their rosaries.
They wilt the grace they walk upon,
They leech the light out of a room
They'd like to drive us down the drain
At the Magdalene Laundries.

Peg O'Connell died today.
She was a cheeky girl,
A flirt
They just stuffed her in a hole.
Surely to God you'd think at least
    some bells should ring!
One day I'm going to die here too,
And they'll plant me in the dirt
Like some lame bulb
That never blooms come any spring,
Come any spring,
No, not any spring"

    Joni Mitchell - "The Magdalene Laundries".


Did that soften you up a little? If not, try this.


"The story hit the news
From coast to coast.
They said you beat the girl
You loved the most.
Seemed out of place,
With the beauty
With your fist marks on her face.
Your buddies all stood by;
They bet their fortunes
And their fame
That she was out of line
And you were not to blame.

Six hundred thousand doctors
Are putting on rubber gloves
And they're poking
At the miseries made of love.
They say they're learning
How to spot the battered wives
Among all the women
They see bleeding through their lives.
I bleed-
For your perversity-
These red words that make a stain
On your white-washed claim that
She was out of line
And you are not to blame.

I heard your baby say
When he was only three
"Daddy, let's get some girls
One for you and one for me."
His mother had the frailty
You despise
And the looks
You love to drive to suicide.

Not one wet eye around
Her lonely little grave
Said "He was out of line girl,
You were not to blame".

             Joni Mitchell - "Not to Blame".


IMO, working to change the very real social conditions described in these lyrics would be much more likely to reduce the abortion rates than preaching slanted pro-life rhetoric.

And until then, just be grateful you'll never have to face these conditions yourself, wilco.

Peace

daylia


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: wilco
Date: 10 Dec 02 - 10:39 AM

Babies are babies, some pre-born.
Hope this helps.
Peace.
Wilco


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Wolfgang
Date: 10 Dec 02 - 11:02 AM

Babies are babies, some pre-conceived.

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,daylia
Date: 10 Dec 02 - 11:16 AM

Quibbling over words just clouds the issue, wastes energy and accomplishes nothing. So does using words that produce a false image of one's subject, for the purpose of converting others to one's own point of view.

What DOES help is to expand one's 'tunnel vision' - to see the whole forest, not just specific little trees. And then to do something about that vision.

I don't like to see anyone die, born or unborn. It's hard to be both 'pro-life' and 'pro-choice'.

So I just try to be 'pro-love'. And that's enough on this topic for one day, for me anyway.

daylia


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: boglion
Date: 10 Dec 02 - 11:26 AM

There's a song by the Saw Doctors a few years ago. it's called I think, "Every Day". It's about Irish girls having to make the journey to England for their abortions. The chorus goes something like:

"Every Day she's on the boat as it pulls out from the Quay.
Far from small town eyes she floats across the Irish Sea."

Terry


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 11 Dec 02 - 11:48 AM

Any attempt to stop the use of these songs for 'politically correct' reasons is surely a case of:   "Throwing the baby out with the bathwater"   (a phrase associated with the idea that taking very hot baths can lead to misscarriage/ spontaneous abortion)

Nigel


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Grab
Date: 11 Dec 02 - 12:16 PM

"Babies are babies".

I trust Wilco can tell the difference between a chicken and an egg. Why the difficulty between a baby and a human egg?

And as far as "precious little babies" goes, how precious is a baby born to someone who doesn't want it? Who, with every fibre of their being, hates that child for everything it's taken away from them?

Graham.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,daylia
Date: 11 Dec 02 - 12:51 PM

What I find truly mystifying is the division some people claim exists between 'women's issues' and 'foetus issues', so to speak. Is it not glaringly obvious that they are inextricably linked, both physically and socially?

Can't have one without the other!

I also wonder why related 'men's issues' (like the way they are conditioned to behave/think towards women) are usually totally left out of the picture. Seems to me that would be a very good place to start if real changes are ever going to happen.

daylia


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: katlaughing
Date: 11 Dec 02 - 02:03 PM

I couldn't agree more, daylia and Grab. Daylia, thanks very much for posting the songs and also for keeping the discussion level-headed on your end. Pointing the finger at women only, regarding abortions and unwanted/unplanned pregnancies, is surely the ultimate in blaming the victim.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 11 Dec 02 - 02:37 PM

It's surely a mistake to put all the focus on the question of legality when approaching this issue. That's important, true enough, but it's not the beginning or the end of it.

Just because something is legal doesn't mean it's right; and just because something is illegal doesn't mean it's wrong. And either way that doesn't mean it won't happen.

There is one thing on which people on both sides over this should be in agreement - "right to choose" or "right to life", both surely have to agree it is intolerable that any woman should be driven to have an abortion because of the pressures of poverty or any of the other pressures. And yet that kind of thing happens every day - and there are things that can be done to help it not happen, practical help of all kinds.

"On Sunday he was our foetus
On Monday our son did greet us
For the rest of his life, may we help him in strife,
And please God, the world won't defeat us."


That's Vin Garbutt again - the birth announcement written to insert in the local paper when he and Pat had their son Tim. But the paper wouldn't print it - "it made some of the girls in the office feel sick..."


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,daylia
Date: 11 Dec 02 - 02:43 PM

Thanks, katlaughing. This is one subject that really hits me 'below the belt'. It was difficult to write out those painful lyrics, and I wondered if it was worth it.

Peace and Hope

daylia


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: katlaughing
Date: 11 Dec 02 - 02:53 PM

You're welcome, daylia. I hope you will look into joining us as a member, too. It's free and only takes a few minutes. You can send and receive personal messages that way, too.

I know what you mean. It is difficult. I had a friend whose new husband forced her to abort just after they were married. She had a son from a previous marriage, was not pregnant when she married this guy. He wasn't ready for children of their own. She was not assertive, very unsure of herself and already abused by him.

There are more stories as well as my own teen pregnancy which resulted in my dear son. I've worked with teen girls who couldn't/wouldn't/didn't understand birth control with boyfriends who didn't give a damn, that was her problem, not his!

If people really want to lessen the rate of abortion they will have to work on changing society's ways of treating women and men.

kat


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,daylia
Date: 12 Dec 02 - 10:18 AM

kat - thanks so much for your understanding and for sharing your experiences. It takes courage and loads of self-confidence be open about such personal matters on the internet, but people really do need to hear the truth if changes ever going to happen. I raised three wonderful sons, mostly on my own, whose beginnings were in very similiar circumstances. Seems I spent most of my life trying to balance the insensitive, violent 'macho man' conditioning coming at them from all directions - from their fathers and grandfathers to their peers and the media - with even a little respect for women and for their own sexuality. It's been a very long haul, but looking at them today, I'm proud to say I think I achieved a measure of success. :-)

I do intend to become a member. I've only had this computer for a few weeks and I'm still learning how to use it. I guess I need some time to feel 'safe' on the internet, too. But I've been having a lot of fun, and learning much, here among the cats!

You cats are wonderful folk!

daylia


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: katlaughing
Date: 12 Dec 02 - 11:41 AM

Glad to hear that you plan to join, daylia. Sometimes it is more fun/safer to share personal messages. Though, my life has been an open book, here at the Mudcat, for ages, it seems.:-)

I am proud of the way my son has come into adulthood, too. He just turned 32 this year (oh gawdess, I am NOT that old!:-) and is just ending a 12 year relationship and I am very proud of the way they are both handling it; much more mature and reasonable than I ever was in such cicrumstances, of course I was younger, too.

Welcome to the Mudcat!

kat


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Grab
Date: 12 Dec 02 - 01:44 PM

Dead right, McGrath. The essential right is the right to *choice*.

Unfortunately, one side fails to see that it's also intolerable for a woman to be forced to bear a child she doesn't want, can't support and won't love. The well-recorded suicides, deaths from back-street abortions, child abuse and desperate living conditions of previous years notwithstanding.

Grab.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 12 Dec 02 - 07:53 PM

It's intolerable for a women to be denied the support and help she needs in order to bear a child. And if as a result she decides to go for an abortion, that is not a free choice.

If the only abortions were the result of free chice there would be far fewer of them. And that is something which anybody who sincerely is either "pro-choice" or "pro-life" ought to be working to achieve.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Amos
Date: 13 Dec 02 - 01:17 AM

Daylia:

Thanks a great deal for the courage you have demonstrated here. It is appreciated.

Kevin: you have the wisdom of age on ye, mon!! :>)

A


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Bert
Date: 13 Dec 02 - 05:57 AM

Abortion is a tragedy. But sometimes, and many times too often, it is necessary.

I know someone who had an abortion because she was exposed to German Measles. I know another girl who had an abortion because she was raped, and yet another because she was young and single and society (and also her family) wouldn't accept that.

One thing is certain, speaking as a man, it is not my decision.
Fortunately I have never had to make that decision.

Also, fortunately, I have friends here like kat who can say things better than I can...

"If people really want to lessen the rate of abortion they will have to work on changing society's ways of treating women and men."

How many abortions have been performed because young girls were not allowed to make mistakes?

How many abortions have been performed because society shuns a single mother?

And how many abortions have been performed because some asshole ( in the case I spoke of above it took five of them) rapes a girl?

So if you want to stop abortions Wilco48, first you have to stop German measles and then you have to stop rape and then you have to change society's attitude to unmarried mothers.

If you don't want to do this, or maybe you can't do this, then put your money where your mouth is and pay to raise all those children that you insist should be born. Or shut your effing mouth.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,jim
Date: 13 Dec 02 - 06:32 AM

The Saw Doctors Everyday, from the same oul town cd


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,jim
Date: 13 Dec 02 - 06:37 AM

words to Everyday filched from saw docs website

             The official statistics for last year state that over a thousand
             young Irish women went on a joyless journey to Britain. An
                           average of three a day.
                                 Everyday

                         Everyday she's on the boat
                         When it pulls out from the quay
                      Far from small town eyes she floats
                            Across the Irish Sea
                   She's the girl you know from down the road
                      She's your one from out the other side
                        There's a rumor she's in trouble
                           She's all mixed up inside

                                 Everyday

                      She's wondering what they're thinking
                        Do they know what's going on?
                        She feels examined by their eyes
                         Is she right or is she wrong?
                        She's got a number in her pocket
                         And one change of clothes
                            Her innocence is fading
                         Like last years winter snow's

                                 Everyday

                         Light a candle in the window
                         So she can see it from the road
                         With all the loving in your heart
                           Welcome her back home

                                 Everyday

                         Copyright L.Moran/D.Carton
                All lyrics reproduced by kind permission of the publishers


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,daylia
Date: 13 Dec 02 - 11:37 AM

McGrath of Harlow, you are simply wonderful :-)

    "It is intolerable for a woman to be denied the support and                help
      she needs in order to bear a child. And if as a result she decides
      to go for an abortion, THAT IS NOT A FREE CHOICE."

There's wisdom, compassion and healing in those words. I'd never thought of it quite that way before. I went to bed last night feeling like some great load had been lifted. Gives me a logical reason "Not to Blame", to quote Joni Mitchell again. THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR POSTING THEM!!

Thanks Amos for your encouragement to continue speaking my truth. It's a lot easier to say nothing and ignore the issue, but that accomplishes nothing.

Bert and Grab, thanks for your real-life examples and for showing love and understanding from a man's point of view. If all men had your insight and compassion, there'd probably be no cause for the misery of abortion in the first place.

And Guest jim, thanks for posting those beautiful lyrics. I love how they end with that note of HOPE:

"Light a candle in the window
So she can see it from the road
With all the loving in your heart
Welcome her back home"

I'm grateful to you all.

daylia


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: rich-joy
Date: 15 Dec 02 - 05:53 PM

Frankie Armstrong wrote "The Song of the Second Serving Maid" which deals with these issues (on a whole LP of songs (late 80's??) written around stories and characters from the TAMLIN ballad) ...
"Fine Flowers in the Valley" is a trad infanticide ballad ...

Cheers! R-J


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: BH
Date: 15 Dec 02 - 08:01 PM

Now that the thread has re surfaced I would certainly recommend and make note of the song MARY ELIZABETH by Joe Heukerrot. It is on his only recording (vinyl) Bittersweet.

The piece is a wonderful tale in song that allows one to make one's pown mind up on the pro or con of abortion---granted it does try to make you feel "pro choice" is the way to go. Done, however, in a very subtle way. It is not a harangue---and musically just beautiful


Bill Hahn


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,mrbisok@aol.com
Date: 15 Dec 02 - 11:09 PM

Scrolling thru all these responses, I'm surprised no one mentioned a song by Graham Parker: "You can't be too strong." All night I've been banging my head to come up with just a line or two but can't. The song is anti-abortion. Has a great tune!


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,mrbisok@aol.com
Date: 15 Dec 02 - 11:16 PM

Just punched up Graham Parker's website. There are all his songs with lyrics and chords. "You can't be too strong" -- sample lyrics:

Did they tear it out with talons of steel
And give you a shot so you wouldn't feel?
                ...
The doctor gets nervous completing the service


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,JennyO
Date: 16 Dec 02 - 01:49 AM

Daylia, I am just thinking of joining and I have seen some of your posts in other threads, sometimes in answer to mine. You are one of the people I would want to join for, as I feel we have a similar outlook on lots of things. The only reason I haven't yet, is that I'm not sure whether to put yes or no for the question "receive email news?". So I would really like to see you join soon. I like the idea of personal messages and feeling like I belong. SO LETS DO IT!!!!!!!!!
                                     Jenny


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 16 Dec 02 - 04:09 AM

Message to JennyO & Daylia: (wiyh apologies to Noel Coward)

You do it, I do it,
We can learn to send PMs through it,
Let's do it,
Let's join the 'Cat.

Mrzzy do it, Aine do it,
Bodhran players with a brain do it,
Let's do it,
Let's join the 'Cat.

Way back in time did InObu do it
And he's still in the show.
It's time that you do it,
Come on, have a go!

You do it, I do it,
We can learn to send PMs through it,
Let's do it,
Let's join the 'Cat.


Nigel


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,daylia
Date: 16 Dec 02 - 02:02 PM

Ahhh, Nigel, that's pretty convincing indeed! Love the rhymes :-)

JennyO, I hear you! It would be fun to send PMs (not PMS but PMs he he he) and I DO like to feel I belong. What's holding me back is that I like using the name "daylia" - it has a special meaning for me - but someone is already using it on Mudcat. Maybe I'll hyphenate it or change the spelling a little.

And thanks for what you said about my posts. I feel a "kinship" with you too, and that's pretty wonderful seeing as you're in Australia and I'm in Ontario, and we've never met in person. O the wonders of the internet ... "it's a small world after all"!

I'm 'feline' pretty ready right now! When I'm finished teaching tonight you may just see daylia-in-blue (or something very similiar)!

love to you all

daylia


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,a tourist
Date: 09 Mar 03 - 12:04 PM

The Smiths, This Night Has Opened My Eyes, available on Louder than Bombs. Not about abortion exactly, although people who think too much about such things invariably see a Rohrschach thereof in the first lines:

"In a river the color of lead
Immerse the baby's head"

The lyrics are pretty easy to find, but you ought to hear it sung, especially "The dream has gone but the baby is real (oh, you did a good thing) / She could have been a poet or she could have been a fool (oh, you did a bad thing)"---the delivery really will quite floor you.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,diana
Date: 19 Mar 03 - 04:33 AM

hello i think that it aint write to have abortions and that it is wrong!!!!!!!!!!!!!


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: MAG
Date: 19 Mar 03 - 10:15 AM

Kat Eggleston recorded "The Decision is Mine" on the Camp Coho tape; according to the liner notes it was written by someone else.

Think about "Look What They Done to my Song."

What gets me about "Well in the Valley" is this women being sexually abused by every one of her male relatives, then blamed for it, and blamed for the infanticide. She and all the other women in these ballads will be as dead as Mary on the Wild Moor for showing up with a baby; what is wrong with this picture??


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,guest
Date: 19 Mar 03 - 10:16 AM

Someone mentioned the song by Frankie Armstrong, 'song of the second serving maid' from her Tamlin album. It has effective harmonies, fifths sevenths and stuff appropriate to the seriousness of the topic.

He came into the bar I worked one cold Deember night
He was tall and strong and helped break up a fight
I bathed his bleeding face and even bandaged up his hand
And done much more for him than that before the next days light.

In the way of young soldiers in three weeks he was gone
didn't say where to just said it won't be long
Of course i've never seen him since or even heard from him again
And just like the old song says it turned out he'd done me wrong.

....and some more verses..

And what of the soldier I wonder what's become of him.
How many has he killed in the name of King nd kin?
Now he'll be blessed by bishops, maybee medals broach his chest,
And they've the nerve to tell me that they're the ones know best.
That i'm the one to bear all sin ....
etc
To a real climactic ending

whatever you think about abortin, there have been some very powerfull songs written from all sides.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Joe_F
Date: 19 Mar 03 - 07:32 PM

In some of the versions of "Mary Hamilton" (Child 173), she goes to the garden to pull a leaf off a savin tree, which she hopes in vain will rid her of the babe. (In one version, the king does it!)


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: sed
Date: 20 Mar 03 - 03:18 PM

Carole Rose Livingston wrote a satirical song called "I'm a Friend of the Fetus" which was published in Songletter back in the 1980's.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Hrothgar
Date: 21 Mar 03 - 02:47 AM

Robyn Archer wrote "Backyard Abortion Waltz" back in the 70s. Now I'll try to find some words.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: sadie damascus
Date: 21 Mar 03 - 03:48 PM

Well, in the ballad "The Cruel Mother", in many versions she "leans her back against a thorn", possibly to aid birthing and possibly to shock her body into starting early labor and miscarrying?

I have done some research on abortifacient herbs, and "green willow" doesn't seem to be one of them. There is a really good site at http://www.sisterzeus.com/Abortif.htm, for great herbal advice and analysis. Some of the herbs I found that can cause or help cause abortion are: "American Mandrake, Angelica, Black and Blue Cohosh, Cotton Root Bark, Evening Primrose, Mayapple, Parsley, Pennyroyal,
Pineapple, Pokeroot, Rue, Tansy (very toxic!), Vitamin C (in huge amounts), Wild Cherry, and Wormwood". Very few of these are mentioned in the love songs and ballads that I know that have herbal choruses.

But in one of the most beautiful versions of "Come all ye Fair and Tender Maidens", or "Rue", Dave Van Ronk's version, the betrayed girl laments that in May, when the "primrose fair" comes in, she will pull it up, and, instead, plant a "green willow tree". In other versions, where her "thyme" grew once, now "rue" is growing (both a pun and the name of an herb of mild abortifacient powers.)


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Steve Mullinax
Date: 25 Mar 03 - 01:50 PM

SED wrote "Carole Rose Livingston wrote a satirical song called "I'm a Friend of the Fetus" which was published in Songletter back in the 1980's."

Here are the words I have from a CD by "Rebel Voices" (Janet Stecher and Susan Lewis). Sorry, I don't remember the name of the CD.

I'm a Friend of the Fetus

I am no friend to the fathers and mothers,
And I am no friend to the sisters and brothers,
And I am no friend to the poor and oppressed,
And I am no friend to the weak and distressed.

But,
(Chorus)
I'm a friend of the fetus!
A friend of incomparable worth!
I'm a friend of the fetus!
Right up to the moment of birth!

When it's a baby I will not go near it.
I will not feed it, no I will not rear it.
And when it is crying, I won't even hear it,
For I have no room in my heart for a human.

But,
Chorus.

I will not weep for it, I won't lose sleep for it.
I won't not care for it, I won't be there for it.
I'll back away from it, I won't go gray from it.
I will not pray for it, and I won't pay for it.

Chorus.
..., when it needs friends.
Right up to the moment of birth!


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Spartacus
Date: 25 Mar 03 - 02:27 PM

I don't have time to read all of the above to see if anyone mentioned it, but "Brick" by Ben Folds Five is about abortion.

-Spartacus


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,I'm a choice not a child
Date: 29 Jul 03 - 05:44 AM

http://www.morethings.com/mp3/im_a_choice_not_a_child.mp3

Thought you might be interested in this Steve Barger song, "I'm a Choice Not a Child"

Al Barger
www.morethings.com/log


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: sed
Date: 27 Aug 03 - 03:57 AM

Sad to say my friend Carole Rose Livingston died recently. She wrote the great song "I'm a Friend of the Fetus." I like the song because it is not pushy yet it provokes thought. The tune is also friendly. It's lyrics are playfully ironic. When I first heard it my views were rather different than now. My child would be about 32 now if I had not been so foolish as to help arrange his/her abortion through a presbyterian church leader who was also a physician at the University of Alabama in Birmingham. I feel like a murderer but one who God has forgiven. The mother feels the same. God's rules are sound and our faithlessness will never change their soundness. Although the Bible does not specifically forbid abortion I believe that the atmosphere created by God's word does. But as in Carole's song we must be aware of how many humans can be provided for. Chastity is a hard sermon for the testosteroned youth to accept. I know. As a 55 year old celibacy is tolerable, at least for me.

Steve Sedberry


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: MAG
Date: 27 Aug 03 - 05:50 PM

Let's not turn this forum into a forum on Choice. Feelings run strong on both sides, Steve.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST
Date: 28 Aug 03 - 02:26 PM

The Saw Doctors had a song about girls going over to England from Ireland to have abortions.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Wolfgang
Date: 03 Sep 03 - 06:42 AM

I dreamed I saw Paul Hill last night

Wolfgang (who sometimes thinks there should be penalties for abusing good songs)


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Grab
Date: 03 Sep 03 - 08:19 AM

Wolfgang, I'm just glad there's penalties for murdering doctors in cold blood.

Graham.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST
Date: 29 Oct 03 - 03:56 PM

please help I am looking for a song the name of it is Unseen Angel
and in the chorus there are children singing Twinkle Twinkle little star If anyone can help I would really appreiciate it.. I work at Wal mart and a Lady is looking for this song.

Thanks alot, Cheryl

please email me at cbutrick1@msn.com


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,Gina
Date: 18 Nov 03 - 12:57 AM

Can someone help me to find this particular song? it was out about 15 years ago. it's the unborn fetus talking about their growth in the womb. the chorus i want to say, was sung by someone like pat boone, but the words were spoke from a child who was unborn. am desperate! thanks


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Margret RoadKnight
Date: 18 Nov 03 - 08:52 AM

"The Butcher Boy"
and Malvina Reynolds' "Rosie Jane"


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,Ben
Date: 04 Feb 04 - 01:16 AM

I'm too lazy to read all this crap, but I don't think anyone put Ben Fold's song "Brick". Its his true story about him and his girlfriend having an abortion in high school and how she's dragging him down. Its sad, but yeah.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,guest
Date: 14 Mar 04 - 06:46 PM

wat bout papa dont preach by madonna


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Matt_R
Date: 14 Mar 04 - 07:32 PM

"Bodies" - The Sex Pistols

She was a girl from Birmingham
She just had an abortion
She was a case of insanity
Her name was Pauline, she lived in a tree

She was a no-one who killed her baby
She sent her letters from the country
She was an animal
She was a bloody disgrace

Body...I'm not an animal!
Mummy...I'm not an abortion!

Dragged on a table in a factory
Illegitimate place to be
In a packet in a lavatory
Die, little baby, screaming

Body screaming fucking bloody mess
It's not an animal, it's an abortion

Body...I'm not an animal!
Body...I'm not an abortion!

Throbbing squirm, gurgling bloody mess
I'm not a discharge, I'm not a loss in
Protein, I'm not a throbbing squirm
Ah!

Fuck this and fuck that
Fuck it all and fuck the fucking brat
She don't wanna baby that looks like that
I don't wanna baby that looks like that

Body...I'm not an animal
Body...I'm not an abortion

Mummy! Ugh!


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 14 Mar 04 - 11:20 PM

Plastic Rose by Dave Alvin

From a vase on a coffee shop table
Mary picked her self a flower
While I called the number on a business card
But they said call back in an hour
So I sat back down next to Mary
I said you shouldn't eat I suppose
But Mary didn't say any thing to me
She just held a plastic rose

You two look so sweet the waitress said
So when is the lucky day
Well I ordered a Coke, and I tried to smile
Till the waitress went away
Do you think she knew Mary said
Do you think that it really shows
And she folded her hand in her lap
And she held a plastic rose

And I feel like I should say something
But what, I don't know
When I offer her my hand
She turns away
And she holds a plastic rose

I smoked my last cigarette
As I watched the clock on the wall
And Mary didn't say anything to me
When I said it was time to call
But we talked about it for a week
Both agreeing in what we chose
So I called the number on a business card
And she held her plastic rose

And I feel like I should say something
But what, I don't know
When I offer her my hand
She turns away
And she holds a plastic rose


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: s&r
Date: 15 Mar 04 - 06:27 AM

Throwing the baby out with the bathwater is unlikely to be about abortion see this

Stu


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,emily rain
Date: 15 Mar 04 - 02:43 PM

Prodigal Daughter
(written in and around the old fiddle tune Cotton Eyed Joe by Michelle Shocked)

what's to be done with a prodigal son?
welcome him home with open arms
throw a big party invite your friends
our boy's come back home
when a girl goes home with the oats he's sown
it's draw your shades and your shutters
she's bringin' such shame to the family name
the return of a prodigal daughter
singin
oh cotton eyed joe

i went to see a doctor and i almost died
when i told my mama lordy how she cried
me and my daddy were never too close
but he was there when i needed him most
look here comes a prodigal son
fetch him a tall drink of water
but there's none in the cup cause he drank it all up
left for a prodigal daughter
singin
oh cotton eyed joe

if it had not've been for the cotton eyed joe
i'd have been married a long time ago
oh i'd have been married a long time ago

out in the cornfield i stubbed my toe
i called for the doctor cotton eyed joe
i called for the doctor cotton eyed joe

----

Sally's Pigeons
(sung (written?) by Cyndi Lauper)

When I was eight I had a friend
With a pirate smile
Make believe and play pretend
We were innocent and wild
Hopped a fence and slammed the gate
Running down my alleyway
In time to watch Sally's pigeons fly

We loved to watch them dive and soar
Circle in the sky
Free as a bird from three to four
And never knowing why
Neighbors pulled their wash back in
Put away my Barbie and Ken
Look out overhead
While Sally's pigeons fly

I had a fool's confidence
That the world had no boundaries
But instincts and common sense
Come in different quantities

My heart began to
Skip to the beat
Of the boy next door
She had her eye across the street
On someone shy and tall
We lived our dreams
And challenged fate
In tears she told me she was late
And Sally let his pigeons out to fly...

On the dresser sits a frame
With a photograph
Two little girls in ponytails
Some twenty one years back
She left one night with just a nod
Was lost from some back alley job
I close my eyes and Sally's pigeons fly
She never saw those birds again
And me, I can't remember when
A pirate smile hasn't made me cry
I close my eyes
And Sally's pigeons fly...


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,Kent Davis
Date: 16 Mar 04 - 12:16 AM

"The Cherry Tree Carol", though obviously not about abortion, does address the question of whether the "uterine contents" of a pregnant woman are her own to do with as she chooses, or are a child (i.e. a person in his/her own right).


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,Pollyanna Boyer
Date: 17 Apr 04 - 08:54 PM

I have written two songs about abortion. I wonder if you will post them. The lyrics are original but the music is "plagerized" or hopefully borrowed. The first one I wrote at Christmas time one year. It is sung to the tune of "Away in the Manger" Here goes.

" I think of the unborn on Jesus' birthday
And wonder how many abortion will slay.
No life for these babies their mothers decide.
But I know, Lord Jesus, with you they abide"

The second one sprung to life with the music I learned in my anti-war days. It is sung to the tune of "If I were free to speak my mind" sung by Joan Baez.

"Since I am free to speak my mind,
I'll tell a tale to all mankind.
Of millions and millions of babies slain.
They died in innocence and pain.

This weary world has had its fill
Of works of death. Abortion kills
The time has come for pro-life ways
Vote pro-life then,for pro-life days.

Since I am free to speak my mind.
I'll tell a tale to all mankind.
Of millions and millions of babies slain.
They died in innocence and pain."


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,PollyannaBoyer
Date: 17 Apr 04 - 09:06 PM

Michael Card wrote the following song and recorded it:

"I thought that I heard crying coming through my door.
Was it Rachel weeping for her sons who were no more?
Could it have been the babies crying for themselves?
Never understanding that they died for someone else.

(chorus)
The voice heard of weeping and of wailing
Hist'ry speaks of it on every page
Of innocent and helpless little babies
Off'rings to the spirit of the age.

No way of understanding this sad and painful sign
Whenever Satan rears his head, there comes a tragic time
If he could crush the cradle, then that would stop the cross
He knew that once the Light was born
His every hope was lost
(repeat chorus)

Now every age has heard it, the voice that speaks from Hell.
Sacrifice your children and for you it will be well.
The subtle serpent's lying - his dark and ruthless rage
Behold, it is revealed to be the spirit of the age!

Soon all the ones who seemd to die for nothing
Will stand beside the Ancient of Days
With joy we'll see that Infant from the manger
Come and crush the spirit of the age!

We'll see Him crush the spirit of the age!


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,Pollyanna Boyer
Date: 17 Apr 04 - 09:51 PM

I wrote a third song. Here it is.
" Jesus loves all unborn babies.
All the unborn in the world.
He made their inward parts.
Please don't stop their beating hearts.
Jesus loves the unborn babies of the world."

In response to what some of your contributors have implied, many pro-life people do care about the babies after they are born and they want to help the mothers as well. Every Crisis Pregnancy Center I have ever been aware of gave material things to the mother. I have been involved in "baby showers" where the items brought were given to Crisis Pregnancy Centers. There are many infertile couples now , thanks to our depleted diets, and they would gladly take the babies.
Some even take babies with severe handicaps. I know there is a need for more of this practical love, but there is some there. Some pro-choice people are prejudiced when it comes to this point. Thanks for posting both sides. Did you know that when Moses was born, that Pharoh was having all the Jewish babies killed? When Jesus was born, Herod had babies killed so Mary and Joseph had to hide in Egypt until he died. Maybe we are experiencing this monumental slaughter of babies again because of a fast approaching important spiritual event? My father was illegitimate. My grandmother never had a thought about killing him to save her reputation. She had to raise him by herself in a poverty stricken mountain town until she met his step-father when he was five. She never recalled that struggle with any regret. Do you think Mary would have aborted Jesus if her culture had allowed pro-choice legality? She wasn't married to Joseph yet.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,brit
Date: 08 Jun 04 - 12:43 AM

i've heard
my father sells condoms to sailors
he pokes holes in the tips with a pin
my ma does back-alley abortions
my god how the money rolls in


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 25 Jul 04 - 03:15 PM

Guest,brit

For a fuller version see the DT's My God, How The Money Rolls IN

Nigel


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Vixen
Date: 27 Jul 04 - 08:23 AM

"My Baby Needs a Shepherd" EmmyLou Harris on the Red Dirt Girl CD

"Oh Woman" Jack Hardy on the Omens CD


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Haruo
Date: 15 Aug 06 - 02:28 AM

Kind of tangential, but there's a play currently being staged (world premiere) at Seattle's ACT (A Contemporary Theatre), entitled Mitzi's Abortion. I went to see it last Saturday, mainly because the reviews indicated it was somehow also about Esperanto. The plot involves a not unwanted pregnancy; not planned, but not unwanted, which goes off its tracks when the fetus turns out, in the second trimester, to be anencephalic. St. Thomas Aquinas is a major character.

Mrs. Haruo and I really enjoyed it, thought it did a good job of showing the complexity of some of the aspects of abortion that are taken for granted, and yes, it has a strong Esperanto component. There are two songs in the play, both sung in Esperanto. Neither is original. The first is an Esperanto version of "Those Were the Days, My Friend", the second of "Somewhere over the rainbow".

Haruo


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Howard Kaplan
Date: 15 Aug 06 - 07:49 AM

The song "Mary McGill" was attributed to "Kim Walleck" in a posting earlier. The song's official title is "Freedom to Choose", and it is by (the late) Bob Blue and Kim Wallach. The song is included in the "Mister Blue Songbook", and Kim Wallach's performance of it is on the 2 CD set "The Best of Bob Blue". My understanding is that the songcrafting is primarily Bob's, but the ideas were developed jointly by the two writers.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Scoville
Date: 15 Aug 06 - 09:41 AM

Gillian Welch's Soul Journey album includes a song, something about "ain't one soul in the whole world knows my name".

I've often wondered a little about "Selchie of Skule Skerry". Really, I know it's just about a selchie, but it did occur to me that claiming it was a selchie and throwing it into the sea would be one way to get rid of a "shameful" illegitimate child. Or maybe my mind is just in the gutter today.

Not about abortion, but somewhere I've got a recording of "Unwed Fathers", about a teenaged Appalachian girl leaving home and having her baby alone in the city after she is abandoned by her boyfriend and her family sends her away. I forget who wrote it but I think the recording I have is the Dry Branch Fire Squad and it's both exceptionally pretty and quite sad--a single voice and clawhammer banjo.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: webfolk
Date: 15 Aug 06 - 10:05 AM

I have just flicked very quickly through this long thread, and I dont think anyone has mentioned Graham Parker's (and the Rumour)song 'You can't be too strong' on the 'squeezing out sparks' album.
Not folk, but it is an acoustic track (almost) and very very powerful.

Geoff


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST
Date: 29 Jul 10 - 05:25 PM

I was directed here due to a 45 I had heard when I was young. It was called please don't pick the flowers and I can't find the lyrics any where. It is an abortion song disguised as a children's song. It put fear in me as a kid.

Living here in the United States we do have the ability to choose and to debate like so many of you have done on this thread. So I am just going to be honest and follow my heart.

I was adopted and with this came great sadness that I couldn't discuss with my family growing up. I was grateful for their loving kindness and decided to handle my grief in a very dysfunctional way. My self esteem suffered. I developed ADHD and later bipolar disorder..with poor emotional regulation and didn't even believe that I had a wise mind. I did what other people told me too. I feared constantly that people would abandon me if I went against their wishes. I began drinking in my 20's, self medicating, and again thinking I had no choice. At 26 4 hours from home and living with a boyfriend I became pregnant. When I told my boyfriend he immediately wanted to get in touch with the nearest abortion clinc. I didn't want to and I was scared. But he insisted. I didn't even know about goverment insurance for pregnant woman.

In the end "I" made the choice (but in my mind I felt like I had to do this or I would have no where to go) to get an abortion. IT was awful and it really felt like I entered into Hell. The sadness I felt was overwhelming, thoughts of my biological mother kept coming into my head (which deepened the sadness). I hadn't been diagnosed with Bipolar yet but I was acting like someone who was majorally depressed and underneath I was angry. Some people might say "well now you'll go to Hell"..guess what Hell belongs to God and God (Jesus Christ) is all about forgiveness and love.

I am now 40. In 2001 I gave birth to my daughter who is my pride and joy. It took me until 2006 to finally address my emotional issues with the abortion being a very important issue to expose, grieve, and let go of. Believe me that child will always be in my heart. I am a christian and I practice christian beliefs. I asked for God's forgiveness and he cleansed me. God loves me even back in my darkest hour. To be honest I don't personally believe in abortion anymore. But I do believe in choice. God is a God of choice. He doesn't make anyone do or not do anything. He gave us those choices. We have to learn from our choices. That is the only way to learn.

If someone reading this now is considering an abortion remember to review all your choices. Don't make a rash decision based on fear like I did. Use your wise mind and throughly investigate your options. Then whatever choice you make will be based on your wise mind.

So back to the 45. You see I found it a few days ago in a chest in the basement. I just wanted to know what it said. Now I believe that maybe I was supposed to get on here for other reasons.

take care


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,Amy
Date: 18 May 11 - 02:46 PM

I heard an interview with Natalie Merchant years and years ago, now, and she sang part of a song sung from the perspective of a mother whose daughter had hung herself because she was pregnant and unwed, and in it she laments if the girls had only come to her she would have told her how to use the twig. I found this thread because I was hoping to find this song. Anyone have a guess?

Also- the willow twig- I'm guessing- would have been used not medicinally but in a more physical sense- right up the old hoo-ha. I mean, people have been doing abortions since before there were wire coat-hangers, right?

Just because a thing isn't right doesn't make it wrong, and vice versa. People forget that sometimes.    I enjoyed reading the responses from people that understand the complicated nature of this issue, and saddened by the ones who don't.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Bettynh
Date: 18 May 11 - 04:54 PM

Si Kahn wrote "The Senator" about a state representative who finds himself pregnant and finds out that right-to-life laws (that he pushed through) keeps the doctor from "helping him out."

From Malvina Reynold's website:

Rosie Jane

Notes: words and music by Malvina Reynolds; copyright 1973 Schroder Music Company, renewed 2001.


This song is addressed to my sisters.

Any man who is present may listen,
Any priest, any public official, any physician.

But it gives him no license to touch us.
We make the decision. 

Me and Lydia, Josie and Rosie and Eve,

We handle this matter ourselves, 

You'd better believe, or you better leave.


Chorus:

Rosie Jane, are you pregnant again?

Rosie Jane, you can hardly take care

Of the four you had before. 

What in heaven's name were you thinking of!

Rosie Jane, was it love?


I had an extra shot on top of what I'd got,

In a word I was drunk, so was Bill.

At least I think it was Bill,

And I'd forgot to take my pill.

I guess it was God's will.

(Chorus)

When that baby is a child,

It will suffer from neglect,

Be picked upon and pecked, 

And run over and wrecked,

And its head will be crowned with the thorn.

But while it's inside her

It must remain intact,

And it cannot be murdered till it's born.

(Chorus)


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: oldhippie
Date: 18 May 11 - 05:08 PM

"Will The Fetus Be Aborted?" by Judi Bari


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: MorwenEdhelwen1
Date: 18 May 11 - 05:23 PM

"Brown Skin Girl", in its original version, includes the line "Throw away the damn baby."


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: MorwenEdhelwen1
Date: 18 May 11 - 06:29 PM

The Harry Belafonte version repeats "stay home and mind baby", implying that the woman must keep the child even if its father (a soldier) doesn't come back. Takes the punch out of the original song.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST
Date: 18 May 11 - 09:04 PM

Peggy Seeger has a nice one called "The Right to Life." You can listen to it on her website
here


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Subject: Lyr Add: Lignum Vitae
From: MorwenEdhelwen1
Date: 02 Sep 11 - 07:07 PM

LIGNUM VITAE
(From "Mango Time: Folk Songs of Jamaica" coll. Noel Dexter and Godfrey Taylor, 2007 Ian Randle Publishers)

1. Some woman talk about tea,
Mama look tea, Mama look tea,
Some woman talk about tea,
Mama look tea, Mama look tea.

Come an' drink di Mazzawatti,
Di ile-a-bush an' di taama weed.
Dat's why di young gyal crazy fi di lignum vitae,
Oh mama look tea.

2. Di young gyal talk about tea,
Mama look tea, Mama look tea,
Di young gyal talk about tea,
Mama look tea, Mama look tea.

Come an' drink di Mazzawatti,
Di ile-bush an' di taama weed,
Dat's why di young gyal crazy fi di lignum vitae,
Oh mama look tea.

3. Lignum vitae means a long life,
any girl who was not a wife,
If she know just what she fi do,
she don't have to be a mother too.
Dat's why di young gyal crazy fi di lignum vitae,
Oh mama look tea.

This song was recorded in the 1920s in the US by Sam Manning, a Trinidadian vaudeville performer who recorded many mento-jazz and Jamaican folk songs.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: MorwenEdhelwen1
Date: 02 Sep 11 - 10:42 PM

"Lignum Vitae" is from pg 90 of "Mango Time".


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: quokka
Date: 03 Sep 11 - 12:05 AM

'The Infanticide of Marie Farrar' by Bertold Brecht is a very powerful song, I think I posted the words on another thread a couple of years ago, I will try to find it


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: quokka
Date: 03 Sep 11 - 02:29 AM

I found the old thread finally! Here it is :

Translated by Sidney H. Bremer
Bertolt Brecht wrote:On The Infanticide Marie Farrar
----------------------------------

1
Marie Farrar: month of birth, April
An orphaned minor; rickets; birthmarks, none; previously
Of good character, admits that she did kill
Her child as follows here in summary.
She visited a woman in a basement
During her second month, so she reported
And there was given two injections
Which, though they hurt, did not abort it.

But you I beg, make not your anger manifest
For all that lives needs help from all the rest.

2
But nonetheless, she says, she paid the bill
As was arranged, then bought herself a corset
And drank neat spirit, peppered it as well
But that just made her vomit and disgorge it.
Her belly now was noticeably swollen
And ached when she washed up the plates.
She says that she had not finished growing.
She prayed to Mary, and her hopes were great.

You too I beg, make not your anger manifest
For all that lives needs help from all the rest.

3
Her prayers, however, seemed to be no good.
She'd asked too much. Her belly swelled. At Mass
She started to feel dizzy and she would
Kneel in a cold sweat before the Cross.
Still she contrived to keep her true state hidden
Until the hour of birth itself was on her
Being so plain that no one could imagine
That any man would ever want to tempt her.

But you I beg, make not your anger manifest
For all that lives needs help from all the rest.

4
She says that on the morning of that day
While she was scrubbing stairs, something came clawing
Into her guts. It shook her once and went away.
She managed to conceal her pain and keep from crying.
As she, throughout the day, hung up the washing
She racked her brain, then realized in fright
She was going to give birth. At once a crushing
Weight grabbed at her heart. She didn't go upstairs till night.

And yet I beg, make not your anger manifest
For all that lives needs help from all the rest.

5
But just as she lay down they fetched her back again:
Fresh snow had fallen, and it must be swept.
That was a long day. She worked till after ten.
She could not give birth in peace till the household slept.
And then she bore, so she reports, a son.
The son was like the son of any mother.
But she was not like other mothers are - but then
There are no valid grounds why I should mock her.

You too I beg, make not your anger manifest
For all that lives needs help from all the rest.

6
So let her finish now and end her tale
About what happened to the son she bore
(She says there's nothing she will not reveal)
So men may see what I am and you are.
She'd just climbed into bed, she says, when nausea
Seized her. Never knowing what should happen till
It did, she struggled with herself to hush her
Cries, and forced them down. The room was still.

And you I beg, make not your anger manifest
For all that lives needs help from all the rest.

7
The bedroom was ice cold, so she called on
Her last remaining strength and dragged her-
Self out to the privy and there, near dawn
Unceremoniously, she was delivered
(Exactly when, she doesn't know). Then she
Now totally confused, she says, half froze
And found that she could scarcely hold the child
For the servants' privy lets in the heavy snows.

And you I beg, make not your anger manifest
For all that lives needs help from all the rest.

8
Between the servants' privy and her bed (she says
That nothing happened until then), the child
Began to cry, which vexed her so, she says
She beat it with her fists, hammering blind and wild
Without a pause until the child was quiet, she says.
She took the baby's body into bed
And held it for the rest of the night, she says
Then in the morning hid it in the laundry shed.

But you I beg, make not your anger manifest
For all that lives needs help from all the rest.


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Mudcat time: 19 November 5:24 AM EST

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