Adrienne Rich wrote the following in her amazing book Motherhood as Experience and Institution:
“Probably there is nothing in human nature more resonant with charges than the flow of energy between two biologically alike bodies, one of which has lain in amniotic bliss inside the other, one of which has laboured to give birth to the other. The materials are here for the deepest mutuality and the most painful estrangement.”
So I wrote a choral piece about some of this stuff. It’s called Splitting.
Let me know if you would like a copy of the score!
Here, and throughout the book, she articulately expresses much of what I have experienced as a mother since 1994. It feels very touchy to write about motherhood, as women who are mothers have very different and unique experiences, and because many women are not mothers. Here is a quote from a small film I made a few years ago:
“What is it to grow up in a feminist or even “post-feminist” age in which the accomplishments of the individual woman are expected and celebrated, and yet for her to be completely invaded by a process which she, thanks to knowledge and birth control, had the power to choose or to reject as a life project, and yet, with every month her body goes through the motions, reminding her of her possibility and of nature’s expectations that she say yes to this thing—to this process. And so if she does say yes, she is both more respected and recognized and less respected–she loses time and space and income with respect to her individual vocational pursuits and yet she gains recognition as participating in the miracle and magic of creating new life.” Allie Weigh
Here is the short film that contains the above quote: