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This poem is taken from PN Review 150, Volume 29 Number 4, March - April 2003.On Omitting the Word 'Just' from my Vocabulary
And here I am in a room I don't recognise, being
angular and contemporary, with its own
unabashed light source and the table clear.
I must be somewhere Scandinavian.
Where weather is decisively one way
or the other, and summer,
or winter, will not brook contradiction.
Even the ornaments (such as they are)
are purposeful: a stone dog stares into the fireplace
as though pitting itself against fire
for the next quarter-century.
(How you cannot say `just' and `pregnancy'.)
There is a fissure in store for me here.
There are no wall hangings. Or rugs.
The door is locked against me.
My own audacity in coming here
astounds me. Yet I step purposefully.
I swell uncontrollably.
Beyond in the hallway
the tongue of a bell is banging against its shell.
It sounds like a coffin lid,
or as definitive.
It is marking the hours until I break into two
and loose/gain everything.
This poem is taken from PN Review 150, Volume 29 Number 4, March - April 2003.