Two Shocking Poems

I am gathering old poems for my new book, provisionally titled Long Winters, but which has taken a strange turn and be called Dating Tips for Conservatives: A New Poetry Primer for a Desperate Age.

Be Careful What You Wish For!

Be careful what you wish for!
After a life of silent meditation,

Thomas Merton journeyed to the East
seeking wisdom, the spark that ignites truth,

stood in the bath to switch on the fan,
and, quick as lightning, found transcendence.


Rosario Castellanos

You wrote the poem
where the poor Indian woman
prays Please God don’t let
my baby be born a girl

But I can’t remember
if you bore any children
or were childless like Mistral
or barren like Lorca’s Yerma.

You died in the bath
in your flat in Tel Aviv
by electrocution, far away
from your Mexican birthplace

And I wonder if you suffered
a pain like childbirth
or if it was quick as a flash
of inspiration, a perfect last line.


Published by

Ray Sharp

Father, poet, triathlete, local public health planner

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