Regular Poem: I took Emily Dickinson

29 Apr

I took Emily Dickinson
to the movies.

A fly buzzed–blue and benign–
close to her nose
for the duration,
and she looked at it with
such a large, yellow eye
big and open and wondering and glistening
that I suspected
she wasn’t paying attention
to the show.
For my part,
I was absorbed in watching her
watch that fly.
Overall,
it was not unenjoyable,

So, the next week,
I took Emily Dickinson
to the beach.

We drove there in my convertible,
and she kept calling it
an open carriage,
and she smiled with her eyes closed
and her hair flying out of her prim bun
and into her face.

We passed a cemetery, and I
held my breath–
she did not understand this ritual,
but she complied–
and when we had finished,
and our faces were red,
she murmured something about the
sepulchers laughing at our folly.

When we arrived at the sea,
the salt air melted into our respective skin,
and I felt my pH change,
and she was quiet
for a long time
until she decided to tell a long
story about mermaids
that made her giggle so incessantly
that I understood it only partially.

We got sunburned.
Somehow, she ended up 
more burned than I was.
And we repaired to her house,
but we should have gone to mine:
I always keep aloe vera gel in the fridge.

She does not even have a fridge.

She made a fire
in the cooling night
that had just an hour since been
a stifling day,
and we played games with the leaping
shadows until
all that was left
were embers
and the shadows were too small.

She asked for advice on 
what all-white spinster outfit she should wear
tomorrow.

And I said she didn’t have to wear all white
if she didn’t want to.

She did want to.

And she’d prefer not to leave the house again
if that was all right with me.

And I said that it was,
but didn’t she have fun?

Oh yes, but she had a lot of thinking to do
and writing to do
and being a shut-in spinster to do.

And I understood
a little too perfectly.

 

 

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3 Responses to “Regular Poem: I took Emily Dickinson”

  1. silverscreenings 30 April 2013 at 8:55 PM #

    Love, love, love everything about this. I’m tweeting this.

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. National Poetry Writing Month Retrospective | I Started Late and Forgot the Dog. - 4 May 2013

    […] The One That Didn’t Turn Out How I Had Intended:  I took Emily Dickinson […]

  2. Praise Sunday: Best Blogs — May 12th | I am a heathen. - 12 May 2013

    […] I Took Emily Dickenson To The Movies by Alexandra […]

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