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from Masks

by Ruthann Robson

the consort

1
all romance is a parody of this:
child
& woman as Madonna/Goddess

the day you learned to kiss:
the souring smell of my breast
on your excited wet breath

your giggles like the bluest baubles
on a sapphire necklace

more precious than precious

2
when i was engaged
i stole my mother's pearls
& hocked them
to pay for an abortion
for my lover's lover

then i eloped
alone
with you in my womb

& we gave birth
alone
in a room at the Desert Inn

3
that winter night
the stars brightly gossiping
& the moon
a bastard itself
almost full & approving

the cord was cut
by a paring knife
no doctor stitched me shut

there are scars
not meant
to be completely healed

4
no one needs to tell me
this is forbidden:
in bed together
sleeping through night after
cold night after hot night

our scent is so mingled
no animal could distinguish
between us

or would need to

5
i know how
Mary believed herself a virgin
never have i been purer
                less subjugated
                more sensuous
sweet sweet Jesus

something bares its rubied teeth
& howls
in the desert

 

Masks
POETRY
Publication Date: March, 1999
$14.00 Paperback Original
ISBN: 0-9654578-5-0
160 Pages / 6 x 9