Essay: Audre Lorde’s ‘forever with child’

Sexton also focuses on fertility in her poem. The narrator in the poem has been longing for a son for years. She has gotten children, yes, but not the gender her heart has been longing for. She is fertile, but her fertility has proven to be a source of great heart ache and derision to her. The poem talks about stigma that is sometimes associated with giving birth to children of only one gender, that is female, and the preference that is usually given to male children in some cultures.

Audre Lorde’s ‘forever with child’ is also a celebration of the said fertility. The narrator is pregnant and she gives birth to a female child. During the pregnancy, she does not stop imagining how the child might be growing within her and what part was forming. She also discusses growth, saying in line 26-27, ‘…you flowing through selves/towards you’.

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