Academic journal article Michigan Quarterly Review

The Angel

Academic journal article Michigan Quarterly Review

The Angel

Article excerpt

You didn't have to be a Catholic mother

to march with the Catholic Mothers Against The War

and lie in front of the Navy Yard buses waiting

to ferry recruits to their berths in Boston Harbor.

You didn't have to be any kind of mother.

One was a priest, two others merely fathers.

You didn't have to have a war resister

my 17-year-old son-to serve as adviser.

Arrested twice for civil disobedience,

he knew the holding pen they put us in,

30 middle-class and mostly Catholic women.

He stood up with his father and the bondsman.

The whole world was watching. Nothing I could

have done back then in self-righteousness

would have impeded my body's downward slither.

I am too old now to go to jail for my conscience,

to wait to be processed, dismissed with a click

of the stapler. …

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