Home // December.29.2017 // Léann Herlihy


(1): “The sacrificed calf feeds from the swollen udder”

“What was my purpose?
To sit; to swaddle; to remain silent.
The elephant in the room—a woman
cradling a pail of milk to her womb.
Which one will fall to the foot of the cross,
the fifty litres of milk or sixty kilos
of woman?

I fall to the ground—a stigma;
it falls to the ground—a crime;
we both fall to the ground—a tragedy.

Assistance arrives;
two midwives from the crowd.
Their knees bend,
my legs spread.
A growing discomfort;
a ripening malaise;
out comes the fruits of my labour.

The deed is done, the doers undone.
I stare around for reassurance, which is
neither met nor denied, but rather, uncertified.”

NB: “The deed is done, the doers undone” alludes to the story of Macbeth; that both Macbeth and Lady Macbeth plotted and committed murders “the deed is done”, and subsequently became mentally tormented by their evil deeds “the doers undone”.



(2): extract from the artist’s notebook


(3): performance photo by Marcus Cassidy


(4): artist’s statement



Banner graphic source: a photo (cropped) showing the artist in performance. Taken by Marcus Cassidy; used here with permission.

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