Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Housefrau’s Pretension Party: Poetry!

You knew it had to happen eventually.

It’s the dirty little secret of poetry that, while the dead white men were busy defining what would be the bane of ninth-grade English students of future ages, their wives and maids were emptying their wastebaskets of the verses unfit for the historical record (not to mention scrubbing their under-breeches free of the stains unfit for the gossip columns). And occasionally, after unlacing themselves from their corsets and emptying their chamber-pots into the street, those nameless ladies would find just enough energy to lay down a line or two of their own before dropping off to sleep. Nothing that anyone would ever read, of course; that was for the boys.

Technological advances have given housefraus a bit more time in the day. And those ladies of a quixotic bent have found that the advent of the spin cycle opens up myriad poetic possibilities.

Now, certainly, the world’s poetics is hardly bereft of significant female poets; and I certainly don’t mean to imply that verses penned by ladies who don’t work outside the home are somehow inferior. Quite the contrary on all counts.

I suppose what I mean to imply is that, because I put pen to paper long before I put pledge to table, it has taken me some time to realize that the domestic realm is rich in the material of the arts. And I suppose I also mean to imply that sometimes I don’t have any ideas for writing a post, but I happen to have an appropriately-themed poem at the ready for your blog-reading pleasure.

In fact, let me state it all quite plainly: I intend to inflict my poetry on you. Just thank your lucky stars that I’m not inflicting my chili on you.

Dear Bernice,

I’m sorry
I purchased so much
I know it
is a sacking nightmare

but understand my icebox
is a tomb of rotting
fruit I must replace
before it spreads to

these tomatoes at the sack bottom
I wish you hadn’t
done that

There, a poem. Next time I won't make such a fuss about it. Now go read some Alice Notley and see what truly great poets are doing with their dirty laundry.


Blogger Q said...

This is one of my favorite poems!
I love your poetry.

6:49 PM  

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