(Poem) Jeanne of the Congo by Janine Canan

JC Congo womenNo, she was not burned at the stake.

She was tied to a tree

while gangs of men raped her over

and over for many weeks.
After her first surgery

they continued with their raping,

forcing her to give birth

in front of them, with guns.


the baby died or they

would have raped and murdered

that new life too.

Small and dark, young Jeanne

struggles to the stage and speaks

with the loud voice, laser focus

and fury of pure Virtue.

My mouth is hers roaring from Bukavuto, Sonoma,

every continent on Earth:  Are you tired yet

 of your domineering pornographing predatory

lusting after the power

of demons? Are you satisfied yet—

ugly, cruel, stupid, useless,

vicious, hate-filled,

not even human?


You stole the sacred body

of a human being and you desecrate it

every time you dishonor

a woman.

“Jeanne of the Congo,” Janine Canan’s powerful poem about women and world-wide rape culture, will appear in her forthcoming book Consciousness.

Read Meet Mago Contributor Janine Canan.