Inspired by the powerful and enjoyable, but ultimately sad film ‘PHILOMENA’ starring Judy Dench and Steve Coogan. A film based on fact, it is about the Catholic scandal in 1950’s Ireland where women, often young girls, when pregnant out of wedlock were ‘given’ to the convents to avoid shaming their families. The nuns would deliver their babies and if they survived would sell them to wealthy Americans, literally stealing them from their mothers. The young mothers, heartbroken and already shunned and degraded were then bound in servitude to the convent for several years!

I struggled with this one as I wanted to cover all aspects of the story and stress the evil of those particular priests and nuns without turning it into a cliche church-bashing rant. The victims were my priority. So, for example, the last line refers to fathers and sisters, rather than priests and nuns, to indicate that the girl’s own families, as well as the clergy, were responsible for this shameful episode.


way-of-the-cross-1245080_1280 B

6 thoughts on “TAKEN

  1. Dear Nigel, it is good to see a post by you again. Your subject is a deeply tragic and shameful one. Like you, I have read Philomena and seen the film. There are also a number of books on the same subject in England and U.S. I won’t read any more, the pain is too much.

    Your poem is a great and beautiful testimony and my favourite is the last stanza. That should be inscribed somewhere official.

    Bless you


    Liked by 1 person

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