The bill sailed through the Senate and House… effectively banning most abortions in the state.
—Austin American-Statesman, May 19, 2021
Today I held my son’s hand as we waded into the lake,
strong wind kicking up waves on the shallow water.
“I’m Wave Man,” he said, karate-chopping the swell,
as the foam hit his face and made him sputter,
and I tugged him up so he wouldn’t go under.
Farther out, my talented cousin
was doing something called kite-boarding—
back and forth he traced graceful arcs
across the surface, while high above,
a taut red sail held the wind and pulled him on.
Some say care comes easy to a mother—
go ahead and take it like air.
Tonight, I smoked one cigarette
on the porch of the place I’m house-sitting,
inhaling once like my lungs
are my lungs.
—from Poets Respond
September 7, 2021
Meredith Mason: “I started writing this poem in May, when Texas passed its near-total ban on abortion, and I finished it this week, as those laws are taking effect.”