Saturday, 31 January 2009

jenni daiches


for M. B.

We talked till late
of circles and straight
lines, of gendered time,
of women living in the round
and the onwardness of men.

And then,
today I made a circle, walked
from Seven Sisters Road
to Upper Street and found
bistros and brasseries
but the shop gone
that cut the butter
into quarter pounds.

The Hare and Hounds
still there, thank God, where
he and I ate lunch
that very first of days.
Then to the Angel
to complete the circle
I'd begun
when i was regrettably young.

Meanwhile the men
race on, leaving the earth
rather than bend
as if life were straight,
as if to follow a curve
were to deviate.


S.L. Corsua said...

The rhythm moves with the grace of dance; there's music in this poem. That, and the wording of each line coupled with the line breaks, make reading this piece aloud (which I did) much enjoyable.

Men and women. Straight lines and curves. May we get along at the 'intersection' at some point, random or not. Or pass each other by with, er, pulling lines our way. ;) Cheers.

Rachel Fox said...

I like 'regrettably young' and 'gendered time'.

swiss said...

you're right s.l., it is a good poem to read out. my favourite line is the 'onwardness of men'. there's just a weariness about that for me!

Roxana said...

still, there is something irritatingly simplistic in this opposition, men/straight lines vs. women/curves. but I remember Bachelard who has some very beautiful analyses of this too, the archetypal feminine of the curve.

swiss said...

it is simplistic but there's a humour and regret in it that i think lets her pull it off