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Haiku: Child Bride…

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Children are the hands by which we take hold of heaven.” Henry Ward Beecher

Haiku: Child Bride…

Child Bride by fiat
Clothes stained red from fear and pain.
Womb, unripe, unready…

May, December wed…
Scarlet tears won’t protect you.
Gnarled fingers groping…

The United Nations declared October 11 “International Day Of The Girl Child,” in recognition of the power and particular challenges facing girls globally. Some of the challenges facing girls include: gender stereotyping, discrimination, violence, negative media images, sex trafficking, denial of education and economic disparities that disproportionately affect girls. In some fashion, directly or indirectly, we are all touched by these issues.

“Safety and security don’t just happen, they are the result of collective consensus and public investment. We owe our children, the most vulnerable citizens in our society, a life free of violence and fear.” Nelson Mandela

Haiku: Child Bride…

Child Bride by dictate
cloaked in white, virginal togs
Soon, a crimson sea…

Innocence ignored…
Child at dusk, shredded by dawn
Covered in maroon…

In this haiku, I take a look at the unpleasant side of being a child bride. Babies with underdeveloped wombs having babies, enduring abuse, fistulas, illiteracy and even death. The child bride has no rights and can soon lose value and even her life if she doesn’t live up to the expectations of the family that married her. While not all child bride marriages are consummated early, the numbers that are make it a global concern. We can add our voices in multiple ways and has more information to share. More below!

“If we are to teach real peace in this world, and if we are to carry on a real war against war, we shall have to begin with the children.” Mahatma Gandhi

Haiku: Child Bride… childbirth

Child Bride by culture
Alive at noon, not moonlight
Buried in rust dust…

Birth baby, birth…
Bid ailing new life adieu
Mourned, no more by none…

In 2003, Stephanie Sinclair started a photographic project on child marriages. The project;”Too Young to Wed: The Secret World of Child Brides,” can be viewed on National Geographic, and the interview between Stephanie and Michele Norris on NPR radio.

What are your thoughts? Do you know any child-brides? What is your position on the subject? Would you allow your child to be an under age bride? Do share! Thank you. 🙂

*Please bear with me as I catch up on your blogs and commenting… I’m back on track with reading and responding to your blogs; albeit at a slow pace. Thank you all for your patience! 🙂

Positive Motivation Tip: Each child deserves a chance at life and a chance to choose their path and excel. Speak up!

PHOTO CREDITS/ATTRIBUTIONS: All Photos Invocation by Frederic Leighton, Le Droit Du Seigneur by Jules Arsene Gardier, Newborn, via Wikipedia or my personal collection

Until Next Time…
Ask. Believe. Receive. ©
Elizabeth Obih-Frank
Mirth and Motivation
Positive Kismet

39 Comments leave one →
  1. 14/10/2012 8:49 pm

    Most of the women in my family would be considered child brides. I was barely 18 when I got married. It’s not like it was arranged marriages, as is the case in many other countries, but in the rural south of America it’s not uncommon at all…even today.

    Education, or should I say ‘lack’ of education, is the culprit. Education is key to this problem everywhere, I believe. I’m working on a similar post with more of a political bent and I will reference this post Elizabeth. We truly do have a war on women and this is at the crux of it.

    • 16/10/2012 12:27 am

      True… with more, adequate education, the veil lifts and perhaps certain practices will gradually disappear. I look forward to your post. TY! 😉

  2. 14/10/2012 9:47 pm

    Your approach to this deplorable subject is excellent. My prayer is that every child as you write in your positive motivation tip, have the opportunity to live a decent life without some person selfishly stealing it away from them. I do believe however, if the child is wronged, heaven help that person who commits the atrocity. Justice will happen…it is only a matter of time. Thank you.

    • 16/10/2012 12:29 am

      My prayer too… I also pray that the just will lead the path to change in nations across the world… And that just leaders will have an opportunity to serve their nations too. TY! 🙂

  3. 14/10/2012 10:00 pm

    The haiku’s in this post are great descriptives and very unsettling. It should be unsettling to think of marrying off a young girl. It’s is not all Romeo and Juliet in the world.

    • 16/10/2012 12:32 am

      I hear you… The whole thing is quite unsettling and I couldn’t present it any other way… The videos and pictures are powerful too. TY!

  4. 14/10/2012 10:28 pm

    your Haiku are heart rending. In India still some states approve child marriage .

    • 16/10/2012 12:36 am

      Yes, and in countries around the world, the practice continues… even here in the USA… albeit quietly. TY! 🙂

  5. 15/10/2012 12:58 am

    One of the most disturbing things about child marriage is that it is often wel intentioned. Most parents – even the parents of these little girls – love their children and are trying to do the best for them. In cultures where the brides are children if you don’t marry off your daughter while she is a child you will seriously limit her choices in the future as she will be considered too old for marriage. This, in turn, will make her a social outcast and so it is a difficult choice for a parent. It really is all down to education but that education has to be approached in a non-paternalistic way. If these parents could see that the damage they are doing to their daughters is avoidable many might change this awful practice. Thanks, Elizabeth. Very moving haikus.

    • 16/10/2012 12:40 am

      TY CR and what a joy to see you back again. I do hope you will start blogging again as I wondered what happened to you. TY for your contribution to the subject.. Yes, many parents believe it’s okay because of tradition. I pray the practices will fade away..

  6. 15/10/2012 1:09 am

    So disturbing.

  7. 15/10/2012 2:19 am

    Eliz, your haikus was brilliant. Many blessing sent your way. 🙂

  8. 15/10/2012 4:03 am

    This is a subject that I have had to investigate and I wrote a poem on the subject earlier this year during child abuse month. I wrote about the plight of young aisian girls who have grown up here in the west and have become westernised. Then when they reach 12yrs or 13yrs they are told that they are off on a family holiday to Pakistan, India or wherever and they are married off to an older man. Then they are abandoned in a strange country with strangers in an alien environment with an alien culture. All their friends, family, hopes and dreams lost to them forever. Yes it is bad enough when it happens in their native country but to drag them to this and then abandon they makes a fool of belief. Sorry to ramble on. X

  9. 15/10/2012 4:26 am

    wow… your haikus are astounding. Gripping. Such a sad topic. You handled it so well.

    • 16/10/2012 12:47 am

      It is a depressing topic… TY for your feedback. 🙁

  10. 15/10/2012 8:20 am

    Powerful and heart wrenching haiku. Very poignant and well written. Great post.

    • 16/10/2012 12:49 am

      TY Ce and a wonderful vote of confidence from a haiku queen Thanks again! 🙂

  11. 15/10/2012 8:40 am

    Thanks for your sensitive approach. The physical pain as well as the spiritual one. I have never met a child bride, but having just returned from the UK I know there are some concerns that such practices are still taking place among immigrant populations…forced marriages and even “honor killings” – all part of the picture. I love your haikus. (Stole the Mandela quote for my Facebook page…It is very relevant to Jamaica).

    • 16/10/2012 12:52 am

      TY Petchary and welcome back… It is a depressing subject, but I hope as more attention is given to it on an international platform, the more nations will pay attention. TY! 🙂

  12. Bree permalink
    15/10/2012 2:57 pm

    Powerful and painful message on a topic that continues to haunt us all. With all the adult females ready for marriage out there, no one needs to wed and violate a child. It makes me sick to think about it. Your haiku is to the point. Thank you.

    • 16/10/2012 1:01 am

      It makes me sad too… and the tragedy is that lives are lost for no reason… TY!

  13. 15/10/2012 5:48 pm

    One of the sad side-effects of political correctness has been the excusing of oppression. We need to recognize and de-legitamize some cultures and religions as sociopathic. I pinned this on my Creating Peace Pinterest Board. Thank you.

    • 16/10/2012 1:04 am

      Interesting observation Katherine! I’d love to give education a chance first… and then legal pressures… TY! 😉

  14. 15/10/2012 8:41 pm

    You have brought forward a very devastating subject with resources to consult and review – you are spreading the voice of awareness, knowledge – education. Thank you!

    • 16/10/2012 1:06 am

      TY Allyson! Thankfully, a lot of media covered this subject for international Day of the Girl Child… but we need round the clock efforts too.

  15. 17/10/2012 10:50 am

    Yet another amazing post Elizabeth on such an important issue!

    • 17/10/2012 12:02 pm

      TY! And your topics inspire me too… So much going on in the world of late; good and bad!

  16. 19/10/2012 7:32 pm

    Always inspiring! 🙂

    • 22/10/2012 10:43 pm

      TY for stopping by… I appreciate your comment. 😉

  17. 20/10/2012 11:16 am

    So sad. Well written, Elizabeth!

  18. 22/10/2012 10:32 pm

    I will never forget volunteering at a homeless shelter and one of the ladies asked me my daughter’s age. I told her she was 14 and she couldn’t believe she didn’t have ‘no babies’. Definitely was an eye opener for me and what a different life these children have. Thanks for posting this.

    • 22/10/2012 10:46 pm

      TY Angelia… It is sad when moms participate in archaic practices that no longer have merit in our modern world… we live longer and so there is no need for us to marry so young… Sad. 🙁


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