HCE received a lot of high-quality submissions for The Brutal Issue – sadly, too many to fit inside the magazine! So we offered some of our shortlisted contributors the chance to be published on our website.

Keep an eye on our social media for more great writing like this, in the run up to the release of The Brutal Issue…

Childbirth in History

Clark Morrow


For 30,000 years they died at sixteen.
In the Schloss Charlottenburg
they giggled a few months past puberty,
then white-knuckled themselves into
Schinkel’s Mausoleum.
And whatever they thought of their well-meaning murderers
(the men who swelled them)
they, the girls, sought the atrocity, lured
like veiled availing vamps
exploding bullets into
their lush, harbouring, hushed,
most hurtable homes, men
watching as at a cockfight
the girl and the baby
rend each other gape-wise,
contusing and effusing with blood,
mother and newborn
losers at this wrestling match, mother 
dead at sixteen.
Your Honda, and your hearth,
were built on a heap of hemorrhaged girls
who were opened from within. 

CLARK MORROW is a long-time resident of Southern California, though he was born in Philadelphia and has traveled widely.  His theatre career spans over 40 years; he helped build the original Redlands Theatre Festival in Prospect Park, Redlands CA, where he starred in its very first productions back in 1973. He is also the winner of an Inland Theatre League award for his performance in the Redlands Shakespeare Festival’s 2006 staging of A Comedy of Errors. For 13 years, Clark wrote a monthly column for the web-magazine “The Vocabula Review”, edited by the well-known Robert Hartwell Fiske. He has been a newscaster for radio station KBON-FM, and co-hosted – over a period of four years –  a weekly radio program on both KTIE 590AM and KVCR 91.9 FM.   Clark’s “day job” is with the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department.