Healing · Phoebe, MD: Medicine + Poetry · Prose · Publication · Writing

Broken Womb, Shattered Soul: Living with Infertility (part 1)

Phoebe, MD:Medicine + Poetry Has just published the first part of an article I wrote on my infertility caused by Diethylstilbestrol, or DES. Although this drug is no longer prescribed to pregnant women to prevent miscarriages, it has been shown that this drug affected not only daughters and sons born between 1941 and 1971 but also their children. This is my story as a DES Daughter.

 

Phoebe, MD: Medicine + Poetry

By Barbara Leonhard | Featured Contributor


As we grow and develop, we learn how to identify with many labels or roles, such as daughter/son, aunt/uncle, mother/father, and grandmother/grandfather, to name a few. It seems as though our stories are written before we are born to conform to these labels. In a way, these roles become rituals that comfort us as we agree to them and even expect our lives to go “as planned” based on our social codes and blueprints for survival.

I know I certainly expected my life to unfold much like my mother’s life did with marriage and family. She had seven children, and being the second oldest and oldest girl, I was able to help with all the babies she had. It never occurred to me that I would never be able to have my own children. Little did I know that my helping her at…

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Poem · Publication · Recognition/ Honor · Silver Birch Press

Three Flakes on the Front Door by Barbara Leonhard (MY FRONT DOOR Series)

I’m so delighted that Silver Birch Press published my poem “Three Flakes on the Front Door“. Last winter, these three cut outs of snow flakes appeared on our front door. I took a picture. We never found out who gifted the designs. However, it inspired a poem!

Silver Birch Press

door 1Three Flakes on the Front Door
by Barbara Leonhard

Front doors, gateways to stories
held in the arms of lovers.
Brides and babies travel
over thresholds that welcome
spring’s warm breeze, summer’s first bees,
autumn’s tumbling leaves, winter’s freeze
for child play in drifts of snow
cushioning the stalwart door,
where Mystery gifts

three flakes, cut-out lives
of transient travel
through passageways to greet
weddings, rituals, blessings,
celebrations, holidays,
date nights, lives guarded
by peepholes
and double-bolt locks
until the last flake
melts.

Clothed in frayed lives,
the dead flutter as birds
released
from their cages
out the front gate
into new gardens.

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: I find the concepts of doors, portals, and passageways inspiring. One winter day, someone pasted cutouts of three snowflakes on our modest front door. In this poem, I see the three snowflakes as metaphorical for the transience of seasons and the stages of…

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