Rallying for Justice
December 8, 2022 - Reading time: 3 minutes
I wrote this sonnet for my daughter-in-law who has been an active participant in pro-choice movement since her freshman year in college. Her bravery and determination to the cause is an inspiration to me and I wanted to take the chance to put into words what has passed before my eyes. For me, verse is the easiest method to do that so one rainy afternoon I sat down and began writing. The sonnet that you will soon read is the result of that effort. Nobody has the right to make a pregnancy mandatory. The attempt to control a woman's body by actively denying her the right to choose is a reprehensible and violent act and we have to stand our ground if we are going to maintain the right to choose. I hope that you are inspired by it like I am inspired by her.
I used to cower like a mouse, in meek submission I did bow, For justice seemed so far away and the truth seemed far too slow. But now I stand up tall, with courage not just talk, To shout out loud for what's right—my sorrows no longer doth balk. My voice rings strong and clear above a deafening roar, A chorus of hope rallying others to join our cause. The righteous shall never give in—we'll fight 'til we're sore! And stand up for those who can't demand their rights anymore. No more empty promises that fade away like smoke; Our words shall become true action against all kinds of yoke. We won't sit idly by as inequality continues to choke; Instead we march ahead for justice in the fairest of strokes. It's time to be brave and boldly challenge what is wrong; To speak up against oppression and an unjust status quo. Justice must prevail if we are ever to truly belong, So raise your fists with courage—our voices will ring loudly and strong!
This sonnet is an anthem for freedom of expression and a call to arms for those who believe in justice and equality for all.
The narrator relates how they went from passively accepting things as they were to actively mobilizing others to bring about meaningful change. The poem uses strong language to convey the message that one must have courage and strength to stand up for what is right and to demand the rights of those who cannot do so for themselves. In the end, it's an encouraging reminder that we should always keep fighting for justice and that our voices can be powerful tools.
The sonnet's structure—four quatrains followed by a couplet—allows the speaker to emphasize various points in their message. In the first quatrain, the speaker considers how they once acquiesced to wrongdoing out of cowardice, but have since found the strength to fight for what's right. The group unites behind their cause in the face of opposition and holds firm in the second quatrain. Third quatrain insists on taking real steps to combat inequality rather than resting on empty promises; fourth goes further, encouraging people to courageously raise their fists.
The final two lines of the poem restate the importance of making one's voice heard when seeking redress.