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Whitechapel Woman (11-10-1888)
Jere

They say a pregnancy will change your life,
and I have found---this morning---just how true
that is. My friend, not even you can guess
the awful horror I have just been through,
or why I have so much blood on this dress.
She came into my house, swinging that knife.
I knew, right then, she killed the other four.
(Odd, that I noticed, too, she looked like me:
as stout, same hair, same eyes). She slammed the door
and lunged. Something in me just snapped---a wild
instinct that I must save my unborn child
and myself, too. (A mother's love, you see.)
I kicked, and hit, and scratched, and finally grabbed
her hand to wrest that blade. And then, I stabbed
her with it, venting all my anger on
her body. And I left it, just at dawn,
on my bed, in my garment. That is Jack
the Ripper there, not me. Dare I go back?---
not with this little person in my belly.
The corpse in there?---let them think, "Mary Kelly."

The poem was published in Poets At Work (Jessee Poet, editor), in the March/April 2001 issue (no volume or issue # given), p. 18.


Related pages:
  Jere
       Diversions: Through an Old Lovers Tears