Conspiratorially, invading my space 16-year-old Ellie whispered into my ear miss, are you pregnant? Bad posture, a protruding tummy and female – must be pregnant. I’ve been asked this question since I was 16. As I entered my 20s there was an additional question when are you popping out a bub? In my 30s, there’s another addition how are your kids? I watch the baby budgies rolly polling around their cage, wonder if I’m missing out not creating my own playful energy I get up feel the sun on my face my dog’s nose against my leg look at the poetry books think of my students
Contextual Essay: Having a child is meant to be the greatest gift. However, it is a gift that my partner and I have decided not to have. This poem is a gift to myself as I reflect on all of the great things in my life.
I also hope that women who have chosen not to have children view this poem as a gift, from one childless woman to another.
Rhiannon Hall has been sharing her love of poetry for the past eight years through a poetry club at the high school where she teaches. She has poems published in BlazeVOX20, Burrow, Cordite Poetry Review, Meniscus, Please See Me, Saraswati: A literary and art Ezine, Tarot, and has published an essay in Axon: Creative Explorations. She is a Doctor of Creative Arts candidate at Western Sydney University.