Thursday, May 23, 2024


If there’s any genre guaranteed to turn up compelling stories, it’s the tale of how we give birth. At the very least, the rising action, climax and denouement to a birth story are built right in. There’s going to be some laughs, some tears and quite possibly a bit of gore.

(If you can hear this line from last year’s competition without wincing, you’ve probably given birth: “She gives me an episiotomy big enough to drive a frickin’ Mack truck through.”)

So of course tickets to Sunday’s Birth Story Slam are going fast, organizers said.

The slam promises 10 stories of reproduction, each delivered (so to speak) in five minutes or less by seasoned or beginning tellers from anywhere among the knowledgeable: mothers, partners, doulas, midwives and obstetricians. It launched with a powerful sense of mission:

This event aims to highlight stories that too often remain hidden in hospital rooms, to challenge the stereotypes of those who seek an alternative, to bring together women and their community to realize the shared experience of childbirth, past, present and future. At this story slam, we want to unpack the joyful, ordinary, and devastating experiences that define childbirth in the U.S., to open up the conversation, and serve as a launch point for action.

The all-ages event is emceed by comedian Robin Maxfield, founder of Boston Comedy Chicks, the all-female stand-up comedy show that takes place monthly at Doyle’s Cafe in Jamaica Plain.

And it has a killer tagline from an audience member at last year’s show: “Leave your preconceptions at the door. These stories are beyond conception.”

The Birth Story Slam takes place from 5:30 to 8 p.m. Sunday at The Burren, 247 Elm St., Davis Square, Somerville. Tickets are $8 online (with a $1.19 fee) and $10 at the door. During the show there will be table service and raffles with prizes from local businesses.