Partera
Partera
©2005 Linda Allen

It is her hands that they remember
Gentle hands upon a belly
Hands that reached to feel a heart beat
In the soft head of a baby
She is partera, she is midwife
Like her grandmothers before her
Her hands are now the living tools
Of an ancient line of healers
And when the time comes, she is ready
And the door between the worlds swings wide
She is there to give a welcome
Jesusita Aragon
When a woman has no husband, The midwife holds her in her heart
For she was once alone and frightened, Shamed, and forced to live a part
So she chopped and carried timbers, With the baby in her womb
And she built herself a fine house, Life and hope filled every room CHO


It is her hands that they remember, Ancient hands upon a belly
And her wrinkled face above them, As she hands to them their baby
She has stood upon this threshold, Twelve thousand times and maybe more
Her eyes reflect the light she sees, Gazing through that open door OHO

Jesusita Aragon is 91 years old, and carries on a 400 year old lineage of healers in northern New Mexico. She's been a mid-wife for 77 years - since she was 14. She's delivered more than 12,000 babies.