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songs about abortion

Susan Lerner 12 Sep 97 - 04:41 AM
12 Sep 97 - 06:04 AM
Frank in the swamps 12 Sep 97 - 07:03 AM
Laoise 12 Sep 97 - 07:19 AM
LaMarca 12 Sep 97 - 10:46 AM
Bruce 12 Sep 97 - 02:50 PM
Tim Jaques tjaques@netcom.ca 12 Sep 97 - 05:55 PM
Susan of DT 12 Sep 97 - 06:25 PM
Susan of DT 12 Sep 97 - 06:31 PM
Bruce 12 Sep 97 - 06:58 PM
Moira Cameron, moirakc@internorth.com 13 Sep 97 - 03:06 AM
rich r 13 Sep 97 - 09:20 AM
bert 15 Sep 97 - 09:04 AM
LaMarca 15 Sep 97 - 05:34 PM
Frank in the swamps 15 Sep 97 - 06:57 PM
rich r 15 Sep 97 - 08:27 PM
Bert 16 Sep 97 - 11:12 AM
Alice 19 Sep 97 - 01:43 AM
Bruce 19 Sep 97 - 01:03 PM
Susan of DT 19 Sep 97 - 07:15 PM
Alice 19 Sep 97 - 09:38 PM
Earl 22 Sep 97 - 03:05 PM
Wkailey 22 Sep 97 - 05:57 PM
Tim Jaques tjaques@netcom.ca 22 Sep 97 - 07:57 PM
Susan of DT 23 Sep 97 - 07:03 PM
GUEST,Anonymous 09 Dec 02 - 05:40 AM
wilco 09 Dec 02 - 11:23 AM
GUEST,rose- faery_rose@angelfire.com 09 Dec 02 - 11:35 AM
open mike 09 Dec 02 - 11:37 AM
GUEST,daylia 09 Dec 02 - 11:37 AM
nutty 09 Dec 02 - 11:48 AM
Art Thieme 09 Dec 02 - 11:52 AM
McGrath of Harlow 09 Dec 02 - 01:38 PM
GUEST,Claymore 09 Dec 02 - 02:18 PM
InOBU 09 Dec 02 - 04:24 PM
wilco 09 Dec 02 - 06:08 PM
GUEST,maureen 09 Dec 02 - 08:31 PM
Jon Bartlett 10 Dec 02 - 04:42 AM
DG&D Dave 10 Dec 02 - 06:05 AM
Bagpuss 10 Dec 02 - 06:32 AM
Bagpuss 10 Dec 02 - 06:39 AM
Fay 10 Dec 02 - 08:56 AM
nutty 10 Dec 02 - 09:32 AM
GUEST,daylia 10 Dec 02 - 10:35 AM
wilco 10 Dec 02 - 10:39 AM
Wolfgang 10 Dec 02 - 11:02 AM
GUEST,daylia 10 Dec 02 - 11:16 AM
boglion 10 Dec 02 - 11:26 AM
Nigel Parsons 11 Dec 02 - 11:48 AM
Grab 11 Dec 02 - 12:16 PM
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Subject: songs about abortion
From: Susan Lerner
Date: 12 Sep 97 - 04:41 AM

For a research project that I am doing, I would appreciate any information on folk songs (traditional or composed) dealing with abortion and unwanted pregnancy. I'm also interested in any recordings of such songs. Thanks. Please feel free to email me directly at Meydele@ix.netcom.com

Susan Lerner


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From:
Date: 12 Sep 97 - 06:04 AM

Check out the songs, "My Body" and "Still Ain"t Satisfied" in the songbook called Rise Up Singing. See also the following references in The Mudcat Discussion Forum:

Annie Talley RE: FOLK SONGS TO DITCH 10-Jun-97 and
Jack RE: Parody Folk Circle I 20-Aug-97


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Frank in the swamps
Date: 12 Sep 97 - 07:03 AM

Susan,

I'm not acquainted with any traditional songs about abortion, but unwanted pregnancy is an all too common theme in folksong. "The Cruel Mother" is a chilly tale of infanticide, and there are countless songs of women abandoned with children, "The Dear Companion" from Cecil Sharp's collection is a favourite of mine, Also in Sharp's collection, "I'm a Day Too Young", "No My Love not I", which includes the deliciously wicked verse..

The best thing I can advise for you to do, Is to take your baby on your back and a begging for to go, And when that you are weary love, you may sit down and cry and curse the very hour that you said, not I my love, not I. 'The Cruel Ship's Carpenter" tells of a fellow who leads a girl astray, then knifes the poor wretch.In American folksongs that came over from Britain, references to pregnancy are often deleted ( damn puritans!) but if a young man is inexplicably killing his darlin'....

It ain't folksong, but the Sex Pistols did an incredible song about abortion, I don't remember the title, but it's on their album "Never mind the bollocks". I never could make out all the lyrics, noisy stuff, but I recall lines like..

In a plastic packet in a lavatory,

illegitimate place to be,

Bloody little baby, screaming, mummy, I'm not an animal, it's an abortion. Also..

She don't want a baby that looks like that.

Good uh, hunting??? Frank.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Laoise
Date: 12 Sep 97 - 07:19 AM

There's also the one about incest if this could be included in your thesis - The Well Below the Valley-O, where the maiden in the tale has had several children by her brothers, Uncles and Father and has them all buried in wierd places. I know people who refuse to sing it because of the meaning of the song.

Laoise.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: LaMarca
Date: 12 Sep 97 - 10:46 AM

In most of the traditional songs that I know, an unwanted pregnancy is dealt with by killing the pregnant mother, or by post-natal killing of the child. Some other examples of this (in addition to the ones listed above) are:

The Green Willow Tree - English song in which a woman follows her lover to sea, bears baby on board ship and both are thrown overboard by said lover
Banks of the Ohio - American murder ballad where pregnancy usually isn't specifically mentioned as the reason for the girl's murder by her "true" love
Banks of Red Roses - Irish song with same plot as "Banks of the Ohio".
Cousin Joe - grim little English song, recorded by Nic Jones, where young woman deserts her lover to have a fling with Cousin Joe, gets pregnant, attempts to file a paternity suit against original boyfriend, and hangs herself when she loses the suit and can't support the child
Sheath and Knife, Queen Jane - two English ballads about incest, in which the brother kills the pregnant sister to prevent the shame becoming public.
The Month of January, Mary On the Wild Moor - two songs (both Irish?) in which the father casts the pregnant daughter out from the home. In "January", she is singing sadly about her plight; in "Mary", she and the baby die at the barred door of the family home.
The Maid Ga'ed Tae the Mill - Scottish bawdy song about young woman indulging in a fling with the miller and its consequences. Contains verses about the parents' reaction to her baby - one tells her to "cast it out" and the other to raise it in joy.
Underneath Her Apron - English song, again mildly comic, about a very young girl concealing her pregnancy from her family, which is very surprised when the child is born.

All these are traditional. One recently written funny song about birth control is "Bridget and the Pill", where the good Irish Catholic girl Bridget goes up the church hierarchy all the way to the Pope, seeking permission to stop having babies, and finally tells the Church to bugger off and gets herself a prescription.

Some of these are probably in the Digital Tradition database in one form or another; if there's any here you're interested in that you can't find, I'll dig up the words or give you a source.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Bruce
Date: 12 Sep 97 - 02:50 PM

Where is English "Underneath her Apron"? I lost my copy and reference to it a few years ago and haven't been able to relocate it. A much earlier version: "The rowin't in her apron", Scots Musical Museum, #424.

John Glen said, 'Early Scottish Melodies', p. 231, that there was a version of the SMM tune as "Under her Apron" in the McFarlane MSS c 1740. (3 vols. Vol. 1 borrowed in 1806, and never returned. Remaining are NLS MS 2084, 2085. This is one of several compliations of Scots tunes by David Young, but to the best of my knowledge not printed, and no index available.)

Compare with "Willie o Winsbury".


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Tim Jaques tjaques@netcom.ca
Date: 12 Sep 97 - 05:55 PM

UNFORTUNATE LASS, in the database.

It is similar to Young Girl Cut Down In Her Prime sung by PEI singer Teresa Doyle, and to any number of that type of song that I call 'beat the drums slowly" songs. Usually there is something about who is to carry the coffin, strew the roses, etc.

Then there's Oh No, Not I, which was done by Doyle and also by Stan Rogers -- "take the child upon your back and a beggin' you may go." I think the "green willow" reference in that song is to an abortion attempt ("Don't ever put your trust in the green willow tree")

I seem to recall reading in Annie Proulx's Shipping News that someone attempted an abortion by this method. The song and the book are set in Newfoundland. (Great book, BTW, both dark and amusing)

However in All Around My Hat the reference to green willow seems to be as a remembrance for a far-away lover, so I don't know. Can any folk herbalists enlighten me?


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Susan of DT
Date: 12 Sep 97 - 06:25 PM

Susan - I saw your query on the ballad list and replied to the person who sent it in (I can't seem to 'reply all" onmy current system) and was goin to send you a more researched response to your email.

Tamlin for abortion Bonny Hind, Sheathe and Knife, Lizzie Wan, King's Dochter Jean for incest/murder (child 16, 50,51,52) Cruel Mother, Mary Hamilton It goes on and on and on - nice list, LaMarca

Bruce - "Underneath her Apron" is in the DT


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Susan of DT
Date: 12 Sep 97 - 06:31 PM

also try @baby @deadbaby and @bastard not all songs will apply, but many will


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Bruce
Date: 12 Sep 97 - 06:58 PM

Thanks Susan, I even have Lloyd's book, but didn't think to look there.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Moira Cameron, moirakc@internorth.com
Date: 13 Sep 97 - 03:06 AM

The only traditional song I know that specifically mentions abortion is Tamlin. The lyrics in the version I sing refer to abortion when she finds herself pregnant--

Then up and spoke another serving girl; "Ever and alas!" said she; "I think I know a herb in the merry green wood, That'll twine your babe from thee, Lady."

So Margaret's taken up her silver comb; Made haste to comb her hair; And she's away to the merry green wood As fast as she can tear, can tear...

But she hadn't pulled a herb in that merry green wood-- A herb but barely one-- When by her stood young Tamlin Saying, "Margaret, leave it alone, my love..."

"Oh why do you pull that bitter little herb, That herb that grows so grey, To take away that sweet babe's life, That we got in our play, my dear?"

etc.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: rich r
Date: 13 Sep 97 - 09:20 AM

There is a relatively recent song called "Mary McGill" by Kim Wallick that deals with the modern scene of clinic protests and women's choice. It is fairly long. I will have to dig it out and enter it when I can.

rich r


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: bert
Date: 15 Sep 97 - 09:04 AM

There is also the verse of "My God how the money rolls in"

My Uncle's a Harley Street surgeon
with instruments pointed and thin
He only does one operation
My God how the money rolls in.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: LaMarca
Date: 15 Sep 97 - 05:34 PM

Bert, that reminded me of another version of the same song:

My mother makes cheap prophylactics
She pokes in each end with a pin
My father does quickie abortions
My God, how the money rolls in!


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Frank in the swamps
Date: 15 Sep 97 - 06:57 PM

I fathered a poor little bastard/ The runt is both stupid and thin/ Don't blame it me and my whiskey/ It's the mother who kept drinking gin.

Allright, so I made up that horrid little rhyme myself, but here is an interesting tidbit. I don't know if this fits in with your research project, but an old wives trick for inducing abortions in Scotland in the late 1950's involved sitting on buckets on boiling hot gin, and drinking the stuff. I don't know how widespread the idea was, but it was certainly tried in my case. My Aunt gave me the dirt on this one time. For those of you who might be a bit slow, let me add....

It doesn't work.. 'hic, Frank.


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Subject: Lyr Add: MARY McGILL^^
From: rich r
Date: 15 Sep 97 - 08:27 PM

MARY McGILL sung by Kim Walleck (I'm not 100% certain she also wrote it)

In a clinic on Main Street in Washingtonville/ Lost in thought by a window stood Mary McGill/ When her eyes met the eyes of a woman outside/ Was it rain on her glasses or tears she had cried/ Outside on the picket line Rose Mary Flynn/ Felt the rain on her face and the anger within/ As she stared at the rface inside, gentle and warm/ That seemed almost to beckon her in from the storm.

And the two women found themselves staring awhile/ Recognition, awareness but never a smile/ And there seemed to be some kind of truce in that stare/ Until Rose Mary Flynn recalled why she was there/ The she held up her sign that said "Thou shalt not kill"/ And she pointed directly at Mary McGill/ And Mary McGill before starting to turn/ Gave a nod to acknowledge Rome Mary's concern.

That day Mary counselled a child named Michelle/ Who tried hard to seem calm in her personal hell/ Mary spoke to MIchelle with the tone of a friend/ And her gentleness brought Michelle's calm to an end/ Michelle told her story with pain hard to hide/ Of her mother and John and the new life inside/ She had meant to show love, she had meant no one harm/ But her mother felt anger and John felt alarm

But the new life inside was a life, it was real/ With a brain and a heartbeat she thought she could feel/ And she wanted the child she would love it so well/ But she'd end the new life for her mother and John/ I'll do it Michelle said for my mother and John/ These words had an emptiness Mary saw through/ If you do it said Mary, pleased do it for you/ Michelle only murmured the words "I don't know"/ And she stood and she turned and she started to go/ And Mary made one last request of Michelle/ With her parting words "Take time to think this out well"

that night Michelle's mother stormed into the place/ Not hiding her anger, yet hiding her face/ My daughter came here with a purpose she said/ Not to have you put foolish ideas in her head / She's too young, she's a girl, and the father's a boy/ And she thinks that a baby is some kind of toy/ Your job was to teach her, to straighten her out/ NOt confuse her and send her home riddled with doubt.

My job explained mary was not to confuse/ But to make her aware of her freedom to choose/ My job is to make sure the options are known/ You are right she is young, but her life is her own/ Then mary saw something in this woman's face/ And remembered the person, the time and the place/ This woman had labelled abortion a sin/ The face on the picket line, Rose Mary Flynn.

People often accuse and are quick to condemn/ When the issue is safe and does not affect them/ I don't envy the job facing Mary McGill/ I don't know all the meanings of "Thou shalt not kill"/ It's a conflict more simply prevented than solved/ But the choice must belong to the woman involved/ And I think that the answers come not from above/ But from us and our consciences tempered with love.

rich r


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Bert
Date: 16 Sep 97 - 11:12 AM

Frank,

The Old Wives Tale in England is to dring Gin and Nutmeg.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Alice
Date: 19 Sep 97 - 01:43 AM

Ian and Sylvia recorded "The Woman From York". She fell in love with her father's clerk, gives birth to twins in the woods, kills them with a penknife, then meets them "playing at ball" on the way back to her father's hall. "Oh babes, oh babes, it's heaven for you... mother, oh mother it's hell for you..." The formula repeats itself in another Scottish version, including dressing the babes in scarlet, a symbol of blood.

Alice


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Bruce
Date: 19 Sep 97 - 01:03 PM

Several exelent Scots versions of "Under her Apron" are just published in Vol. 7 of 'The Greig-Duncan Folk Song Collection', #1493.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Susan of DT
Date: 19 Sep 97 - 07:15 PM

Alice - that is the Cruel Mother. look up "#20" for several versions


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Alice
Date: 19 Sep 97 - 09:38 PM

Susan... yes, the Cruel Mother, my brain was bouncing in many directions at once. Last Sunday night after the session here, another singer and I were singing all the versions of cruel sister and cruel mother that we know. Whenever someone sings the Well Below the Valley, it leads into Weela Wallia or vice versa, then all the infanticide songs. The Fanaid Grove fits into the theme, as well.

Alice in Montana


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Earl
Date: 22 Sep 97 - 03:05 PM

The database has two versions "Pearl Bryan" about the murder and decapitation of a young girl. It is a true story of a botched abortion by two dental students in 1896. They administered too much cocaine as an anesthetic which killed her. They cut off her head to try to prevent identification. The body was identified anyway and both were hanged. Pearl's lover, who arranged the abortion, was never tried.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Wkailey
Date: 22 Sep 97 - 05:57 PM

In addition to those listed by LaMarca, there are many Irish songs about unwanted pregnancy. One I like as well as any (for I don't really like any of them) is The Gentleman Soldier. It starts

There was a gentleman soldier At a sentry he did stand. He saluted a fair maid. Will you wait and have his hand? So boldy then he kissed her, And he passed it off as a joke. He drilled her up on the sentry box For drubbing the soldier's coat. . . . In the end, the gentleman soldier turns out to have a wife and three kids, and Molly "had a little malitia boy, and she didn't know his name."


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Tim Jaques tjaques@netcom.ca
Date: 22 Sep 97 - 07:57 PM

Wkailey, that song was done by the Pogues on one of their CD's. I don't have the lyrics handy but someone with the CD should be able to find it.

I don't know if I would say that I dislike all songs about unwanted pregnancies. The Four Marys is a wonderful song.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Susan of DT
Date: 23 Sep 97 - 07:03 PM

Wkailey - See "The Sentry Box" in the DT


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,Anonymous
Date: 09 Dec 02 - 05:40 AM

Ani Difranco - Lost Woman Song


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: wilco
Date: 09 Dec 02 - 11:23 AM

At some point in time, this period of abortion will be viewed historically as a huge holocaust of unprecedented proportions. Future generations will wonder how their ancestors allowed it to happen, much like slavery or the Jewish Holocaust of WWII.
   The memorable "abortion" songs will be about the litle ones who were lost, slaughtered and murdered.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,rose- faery_rose@angelfire.com
Date: 09 Dec 02 - 11:35 AM

a modern one is "brick", by ben folds five.
on "green willow tree"- willow bark contains a chemical almost exactly like aspirin. i don't know if it would cause a miscarriage. are pregnant women warned not to take aspirin?


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: open mike
Date: 09 Dec 02 - 11:37 AM

i can't believe no one has mentioned this one:

CARELESS LOVE

Love, oh love, oh careless love,
Love, oh love, oh careless love,
Oh it's love, oh love, oh careless love
You see what careless love has done.

Once I wore my apron low
Once I wore my apron low
Oh it's once I wore my apron low,
You'd follow me through rain and snow.

Now I wear my apron high
Now I wear my apron high
Oh it's now I wear my apron high,
You'll see my door and pass it by.

I cried last night and the night before,
I cried last night and the night before,
Oh I cried last night and the night before,
Going to cry tonight and cry no more.

Love, oh love, oh careless love,
Love, oh love, oh careless love,
Oh it's love, oh love, oh careless love
You see what careless love has done.

-----------------------------------------------------------------

Traditional

An old and widely sung lament, known also as Kelly's Love.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,daylia
Date: 09 Dec 02 - 11:37 AM

wilco48 - have you no compassion for women at all?

Try listening to Joni Mitchell's "The Magdalene Laundries" on her album "Turbulent Indigo". And for insight into what often drives women to such difficult and tragic choices, try "Not to Blame" on the same album.

They always bring me to tears. I've always liked Joni, but for the sake of my emotional health I have to take her realism in measured doses.

Good luck with your paper, Susan.

daylia


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: nutty
Date: 09 Dec 02 - 11:48 AM

Vin Garbutt wrote an very contraversial anti-abortion song in the 1970's on his Album 'Little Innocents'. It caused quite a stir on the folk scene and many clubs refused to book him.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Art Thieme
Date: 09 Dec 02 - 11:52 AM

My old friend Cathy Fink used to do an AMAZING version of "Dink's Song" that is rally a ballad on this subject/topic. She never put it on a record. I'm pretty sure I have a recording of it from a song-swap we did together at Chicao's old No Exit Coffeehouse back in the 70s---but I don't know what her feelings'd be on having it out there now. I could check with her if you wish!? Too bad, I just got a call from her and Marcy and Ella Jenkins last night. Sure was good to talk to 'em.

Art Thieme


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 09 Dec 02 - 01:38 PM

That Vin Garbutt song was "Little Innocents" - a powerful one too, and it's cost him an awful lot over the years, in all kind of ways. I remember when I first heard him sing it before an unsuspecting crowd at a Cambridge Folk Festival. "Here's a Civil Rights song" he said, and launched into song:

...'An unfamiliar freedom now belongs to common man
It's hard for us to say "No thanks", we're told "You can, you can."
We've evn won the right that evil rich men always had,
It seems forbideen fruit is priceless evcen when it's bad.
So let's scrutinise the package deal we're offered,
Like anti-nuclear save the whale, abortion on demand.
We may feel we're so liberal and enlightened
Like him who to defend his rights did napalm Vietnam'...
With six more verses going over the ground.

And when he ended there was a stunned silence, and then half the crowd burst into applause, and the other half didn't.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,Claymore
Date: 09 Dec 02 - 02:18 PM

A friend of mine, Mary Dailey, wrote an anti-abortion song "Little One" which is featured on her CD, "Beginnings". It approaches the issue from the unborn childs viewpoint. Some of the verses:


Am I real, who can say,
That's the center of debate,
Poised in a precarious place,
Waitng to be born...

I'm a strong and healthy girl,
Hidden like a precious pearl,
Separate from the outside world,
About to be discovered...

They sure had a lot of fun,
But when all is said and done,
I'm the real unlucky one,
Disgarded by the way...

I am happy at least for now,
Floating on a summers cloud,
Not knowing what it is to doubt,
That everything is good...



There are more verses but I don't remember them. Mary is one of the most gentle persons I know, and rarely sings this song in public. But, while Mary knows I disagree with her on this issue, her viewpoint is worth thinking about, and the song itself is beautiful.

(In the interest of full disclosure, I play some autoharp solos on two of the songs on the CD, and the "Second Best Fiddler on the Planet", Sharon Hall, plays on several others). If you want more info, you could write her at 235 Mountain Lake Road, Hedgesville, WV 25427 or give her a call at (304) 754-6044.

Incidently, I think her song "'Till It Overflows", is the best song I've heard on the spate of high school shootings (Columbine, etc.), we had several years ago.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: InOBU
Date: 09 Dec 02 - 04:24 PM

Not a song... but a folk tale, (no offence ye Evangelicals...) but Numbers oh about 6 - 11 describes an abortion performed by Priests, bitter water which makes the child wither in the womb, etc... King James edition, modern translations tend to water down the immage.
Cheers
Larry


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: wilco
Date: 09 Dec 02 - 06:08 PM

Guest daylia speculated in an above posting that a pro-life position indicated a lack of "compassion" for women. This compassion apparently doesn't extend to the little unborn women; you're not supposed to have compassion for those soft, precious little babies.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,maureen
Date: 09 Dec 02 - 08:31 PM

Phyl Lobl from Sydney in Australia wrote the broadmeadow thistle.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Jon Bartlett
Date: 10 Dec 02 - 04:42 AM

What about "I Am a Friend of the Foetus"?


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: DG&D Dave
Date: 10 Dec 02 - 06:05 AM

Vin Garbut's "Little Inocents" has at least 3 anti-abortion songs on it.

Whilst I disagree with the sentiments expressed in most of his material, they are well writen and superbly sung.

Dave.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Bagpuss
Date: 10 Dec 02 - 06:32 AM

Not traditional (I don't think), but Middle of the Island by Christy Moore and Sinead O'Connor might be worth a listen.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Bagpuss
Date: 10 Dec 02 - 06:39 AM

Middle of the Island lyrics

Everybody knew - nobody said.
A week ago last Tuesday
She was just fifteen years,
When she reached her full term,
She went to a grotto,
Just a field,
In the middle of the island,
To deliver herself,
Her baby died,
She died,
A week ago last Tuesday.

It was a sad, slow, stupid death for them both,
Everybody knew - nobody said,

A week ago last Tuesday.
At a grotto,
In a field,
In the middle of the island.

Everybody knew - nobody said.
Christy Moore / Nigel Rolfe


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Fay
Date: 10 Dec 02 - 08:56 AM

There's one on a Peggy Seeger album, I presume written by her, I don't know the title, but have some lyrics in my head....

I don't want the bot with the long brown hair,
I don't want the boy with curls,
I want Jimmy and the devil may care
Cause Jimmy's good with the girls.

Just remembered, it's called The Judges Chair - quite a contempoary song written in the folk style.

Good luck.


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: nutty
Date: 10 Dec 02 - 09:32 AM

Here's a song published in the early 70's in the book of Bawdy British Folk Songs by Tony McCarthy. .... Definitely a song of its time

Sex and the Single Girl

When I came to Town it got me down
There was no-one that I knew
Till I met Pete, who was kind and sweet
And told me what to do

Chorus
I've tried jumping up and down
I've laced my baths with gin
But it's harder far to get it out
Than it was to put it in

Pete never told me of the ring
The cream or else the cup
Said 'Dont take fright, It'll be all right
If you do it standing up'

So I loved Pete all in the street
And up against the wall
He said 'Just cough when you've had enough
And I swear you'll never fall'

Now truth to tell it all went well
Though I was worried in May
And got in a state, I was well past my date
And didn't know what he'd say

Oh I don't want to be married yet
I don't want to be a wife
And I know he'd have thought that he'd been caught
If I'd tied him down for life
    So I tried jumping up and down
    And laced my baths with gin
    But it was harder far to get it out
    Than it was to get it in

(c)Tony McCarthy September 1971


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,daylia
Date: 10 Dec 02 - 10:35 AM

wilco48

Calling embryos and foetuses "little unborn women" and "soft precious little babies" is inflammatory and slants the truth, in my opinion. They are neither. They are embryos and foetuses.

Having compassion for women in tragic dilemnas does not prevent one from having compassion for foetuses and embryos. But it DOES help to BALANCE one's understanding of this controversial and painful issue.

And it goes a long way in encouraging one to develop the rare ability to "Judge not, and ye shall not be judged". Like the old saying goes, don't judge a man (or a woman) till you've walked a mile in their moccasins.

Maybe this will help.


"I was an unmarried girl
I'd just turned twenty-seven
When they sent me to the sisters
For the way men looked at me.
Branded as a jezebel,
I knew I was not bound for Heaven
I'd be cast in shame
Into the Magdalene Laundries.

Most girls come here pregnant
Some by their own fathers.
Bridget got that belly
From her parish priest.
We're trying to get things white as snow,
All of us woe-begotten daughters,
In the steaming stains
Of the Magdalene Laundries.

Prostitutes and destitutes
And temptresses like me
Fallen women-
Sentenced into dreamless drudgery ...
Why do they call this heartless place
Our Lady of Charity?
Oh charity!

These bloodless brides of Jesus,
If they'd just once glimpsed their Groom,
Then they'd know; and they'd drop the stones
Concealed behind their rosaries.
They wilt the grace they walk upon,
They leech the light out of a room
They'd like to drive us down the drain
At the Magdalene Laundries.

Peg O'Connell died today.
She was a cheeky girl,
A flirt
They just stuffed her in a hole.
Surely to God you'd think at least
    some bells should ring!
One day I'm going to die here too,
And they'll plant me in the dirt
Like some lame bulb
That never blooms come any spring,
Come any spring,
No, not any spring"

    Joni Mitchell - "The Magdalene Laundries".


Did that soften you up a little? If not, try this.


"The story hit the news
From coast to coast.
They said you beat the girl
You loved the most.
Seemed out of place,
With the beauty
With your fist marks on her face.
Your buddies all stood by;
They bet their fortunes
And their fame
That she was out of line
And you were not to blame.

Six hundred thousand doctors
Are putting on rubber gloves
And they're poking
At the miseries made of love.
They say they're learning
How to spot the battered wives
Among all the women
They see bleeding through their lives.
I bleed-
For your perversity-
These red words that make a stain
On your white-washed claim that
She was out of line
And you are not to blame.

I heard your baby say
When he was only three
"Daddy, let's get some girls
One for you and one for me."
His mother had the frailty
You despise
And the looks
You love to drive to suicide.

Not one wet eye around
Her lonely little grave
Said "He was out of line girl,
You were not to blame".

             Joni Mitchell - "Not to Blame".


IMO, working to change the very real social conditions described in these lyrics would be much more likely to reduce the abortion rates than preaching slanted pro-life rhetoric.

And until then, just be grateful you'll never have to face these conditions yourself, wilco.

Peace

daylia


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: wilco
Date: 10 Dec 02 - 10:39 AM

Babies are babies, some pre-born.
Hope this helps.
Peace.
Wilco


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Wolfgang
Date: 10 Dec 02 - 11:02 AM

Babies are babies, some pre-conceived.

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: GUEST,daylia
Date: 10 Dec 02 - 11:16 AM

Quibbling over words just clouds the issue, wastes energy and accomplishes nothing. So does using words that produce a false image of one's subject, for the purpose of converting others to one's own point of view.

What DOES help is to expand one's 'tunnel vision' - to see the whole forest, not just specific little trees. And then to do something about that vision.

I don't like to see anyone die, born or unborn. It's hard to be both 'pro-life' and 'pro-choice'.

So I just try to be 'pro-love'. And that's enough on this topic for one day, for me anyway.

daylia


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: boglion
Date: 10 Dec 02 - 11:26 AM

There's a song by the Saw Doctors a few years ago. it's called I think, "Every Day". It's about Irish girls having to make the journey to England for their abortions. The chorus goes something like:

"Every Day she's on the boat as it pulls out from the Quay.
Far from small town eyes she floats across the Irish Sea."

Terry


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 11 Dec 02 - 11:48 AM

Any attempt to stop the use of these songs for 'politically correct' reasons is surely a case of:   "Throwing the baby out with the bathwater"   (a phrase associated with the idea that taking very hot baths can lead to misscarriage/ spontaneous abortion)

Nigel


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Subject: RE: songs about abortion
From: Grab
Date: 11 Dec 02 - 12:16 PM

"Babies are babies".

I trust Wilco can tell the difference between a chicken and an egg. Why the difficulty between a baby and a human egg?

And as far as "precious little babies" goes, how precious is a baby born to someone who doesn't want it? Who, with every fibre of their being, hates that child for everything it's taken away from them?

Graham.


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