Thursday, July 14, 2011

Temptation by Nina Cassian

By Nina Cassian

Call yourself alive?  Look, I promise you
that for the first time you'll feel your pores opening
like fish mouths, and you'll actually be able to hear
your blood surging through all those lanes,
and you'll feel light gliding across the cornea
like the train of a dress. For the first time
you'll be aware of gravity
like a thorn in your heel,
and your shoulder blades will ache for want of wings.
Call yourself alive?  I promise you
you'll be deafened by dust falling on the furniture,
you'll feel your eyebrows turning to two gashes,
and every memory you have --- will begin
at Genesis.

from: "Staying Alive: Real Poems for Unreal Times," page 48



Wine and Words said...

I love that so much! And the title? Almost a dare to live. It reminds me of prayers I have uttered...dangerous prayers...the kind where you stand open, balls out, open to whatever it takes.

Love you my Marion!

Ben Ditty said...

I love these poems you find!

Terresa said...

Love this, what vivid imagery, diction!

Fly, Marion, on wings of light.

Kelly said...

What an amazing tattoo!!

This is my favorite line from that poem: "For the first time
you'll be aware of gravity
like a thorn in your heel"

We finally got some rain, Marion! Of course we found out in the process that our brand new roof (3 mos. old) leaks! *sigh*

Phoenix said...

Beautiful, as always, Marion. "'ll feel light gliding across the cornea like the train of a dress." WOW. Simply amazing... and fantastic imagery.

Thanks for sharing and illuminating my day once again with beautiful poetry.

Snowbrush said...

Ah, wings! Maybe I don't qualify for wings, but paws might be cute.

quid said...

Ooooh. Almost painful, reading this. The poet is new to me, too. Great find!


Marion said...

Thanks for the great comments, everyone. Y'all keep me hunting for great poetry in my vast collection, you really do. Thank God for all the fabulous poetry anthologies & poets out there!! I love you all VERY MUCH!!! xoxo

erin said...

give me some of dat! awesome writing. thorn in your heel! love that. love this book, marion. my all time favorite poetry book. my many thanks.


Katherine van Schoonhoven said...

Wow, Marion! What a great poem -- a sucker punch to the heart. "Shoulder blades will ache for want of wings" -- brilliant line. Perfect photo you've included.

It reminds me so much of a figure drawing session I was in. The model was beautiful, ethereal even. She moved her body like a dancer or and athlete. I didn't even mind that all of her poses were frontal (her grace excused what would have been tedious in a different model) until the long pose at the end, when she turned her back to us and lifted her arms ... only to reveal angel wings tatooed from shoulder blade to sacral dimple. I felt breathless then as I do now.

Serena said...

I'm not familiar with this poet, but I really, really like this selection. It certainly does make you think.

Hope you're having a lovely weekend.