The Circumcision of Christ, Albrecht Durer, c.1505, WikiArt.org
I have waited a long time
to address what was removed
without my consent
with limbs pinned down
in the name of a greater good.
Without the preliminary discussion
that should have taken place
with parents and medical personnel
and me – if I had not been eight days’ old at the time
and had been aware of the stakes.
And the greater good?
a marker of identity?
a badge of religious constancy?
a prophylactic against disease?
a constraint on sexuality?
I never understood why
male circumcision was considered
until very recently
a custom beyond criticism
a practice beyond reproach.
Whilst its female counterpart
has been the stuff
of international scrutiny
for as long as I can remember
a target of concern.
Don’t get me wrong.
I am not for ablation under (almost) any circumstances.
I just want to hear an argument that explains
why male cutting does not female cutting cut
– and please give me back my foreskin.