A Poem and a Video Performance by Emily Woodruff

Many Wombs

I have travelled many wombs,
yours was the first
the first of many to come.

You pushed me out, and like a coffin out the hearse
adorned me with daisies,
Gentle, supple flowers.
Belly soft, your angel.

You filled me with helium and paraded me through the streets
Above it all, she’s just like me, ‘Oh Em’
‘Til I became a balloon around my ankle filled with lead.

Hop into bed, spread your head,
So fertile, no protection,
Incessant projection.
You wormed into my mind, a parasite
Always attached, but never connected.

It doesn’t say much but it sits on the wall and observes
Stares at the blank spaces between my eyes
where my third eye should reside.

You got fucked
So I am fucked.
My womb is fucked, my children are fucked,
My waters poisoned by the sludge.
My eggs will not be bred, because he bred,
And I, your daily bread, your mana, upon which you fed
Has been left
Barren.

I am a wasteland that waits for you to grow.

Bereft, of a dream I once sold,
Marketed and tressed,
Towed the party line, loyal to my clan,
I wove our tartan threads.
Wore it with pride, day & night, even in bed,
A tweed so thick even lovers couldn’t penetrate.

‘Til one day I rose, looked in the mirror and it
shed

fell away

And what was left?
A mess.
Years of jest turned sour
And memories hazed
with this lens
of clarity, ironically,
yet the foundations bend.

Light doesn’t move in the same way, the way it hits and reflects,
the laws of physics suspend.
So I know there’s no end, even in your end
because the web extends distances
the human mind cannot
comprehend,
its tendrils, so complex,
I’ll never fully untie the knots in my neck.

Confronting Motherhood – A Video Dance Performance by Emily Woodruff


Emily’s work addresses our fear of ourselves, playing with the thin veil that adorns our intimacy/barbarism. She invokes womanhood, power play, flesh, hedonism and violence to identify relational patterns that form an almost archetypal narrative.

Banner: A Still from Confronting Motherhood, a video performance by Emily Woodruff

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