A warm woman, Heart of three girls, Beating with liquored pulse, Not reprobate nor lost But auctioned by quick events At a ridiculous cost.
Bereft of gold and myrrh, The wise one still, Coming slowly over lifeless hills To this lush Gulf shore, Planting Cadmusian seeds To sprout and revenge herself With images of Saint George.
Esther from the Garden, Her kerchief soiled yet white As life-germ, ranges wide To Calvary’s summit. The seeds of ancient Mordecai Thrive on her energy.
Minor immortality: Life that grows above the ground. Outside, a coldblack night Wrinkles wet as eels. An albatross drops from her neck, Throwing off wingspray Against the eyes’ newer night, And she submits to sleep, Counting sheep that pass in threes Beneath her tired lids.
Use the player below to listen to Louis Daniel Brodsky read this poem.
Striking images of the real and imagined world abound in these thirty-two pieces, from vivid glimpses of small-town life to surreal portrayals of city existence. Exploding traditional notions of universal themes such as faith, love, and justice, Brodsky casts aside "wide-jawed dreamers," in favor of those who "pause on the brink / Of discovery / And shout," realizing "that the dream, / The possibility, does exist, / Breeds like mosquitoes / On the eye's swollen surface."
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