Ferdinand Vanek Award 2015 > Body Full of Pain
Magda Fertacz

Body Full of Pain

Magda Fertacz
BODY FULL OF PAIN (sanitary rituals)

(Ciało bólowe – obrzędy higieniczne)


     Pia represents all women in this monologue: “I speak, here in front of you, yet driven out of my body, in the name of all women, whose bodies they have beaten, burnt, cut, pierced, crunched, squeezed, on which they have poured acid, on which they have stepped, which they have thrown around, kicked, grinded, ripped apart. I demand justice in court and maybe even the punishment of the guilty, if only by telling them what they committed.” Pia naturalistically describes what men did to her body from early childhood up till old age, speaking not only of rape, but also about psychological terror or the abuse of her body in the advertising business. Men completely used up her body and then threw it away like an old rag. While it was at their disposal, they invested into it, made it “better” and now they are afraid to even look at it and they would find it revolting to touch. And that is why Pia is here, to make them look. In the finale of her speech, Pia as if wants to reconcile herself with her body and turns to it, saying: “I stand here in front of you, my body, and I plead for forgiveness. For letting you lie for so long in a lime pit. For denying, for abandoning. Now I stand in front of you and I accept you with everything they have done to you and that I have done to you. I promise never to betray you again, never to abandon you, never to laugh at you, never to deny you. /…/ I, Pia, come back to you, I am coming back to my body.” This reconciliation as if brought new inner strength to Pia and so the accusation eventually turns into a proud appeal to men to pay tribute to her body for the last time and to give it the respect it deserves: “Let the son, the most tender of you all, oil my body with milk and honey, making my skin innocent once again. My body demands love. Sing the sacred song, asking the soul to make his home here, from where it left. Then happiness will come. Then love will come. Then we shall live to see our reconciliation.”