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Poem For Adrienne Rich (I)
(14 Februrary 1928 - 17 February 2004 / New South Wales / Australia)

Poem For Adrienne Rich (I)

Wonderful woman, proud to be a person
in this day and age of swapped sexes.
To feel love for one’s own kind
(sex is just an arbitrary accident) —
always clinical the other,
the open-hearted surgery of love
between mere opposites in most things malleable,
a never quite melding agreement
to disagree on most things in life.
And yet you were friends with what
sounds like a “perfect partner” for
half of your life; a “good match”, productive
for both of you, even redolent
with healthy children. You’ve had
the best and worst of all possible worlds:
wife, mother, poet, lover, a piercing
intellect and a truly inventive
art. I can only envy in a friendly way
your giftedness. I heard you interviewed
on that poor rat-bag of usually second-rate
opinions the radio by a talented
journalist on lisping leave from the hell
of Zagreb. Your quiet, calm and yes
charming replies sent me after your books
when I had previously thought you
not only immune from but averse to
all men. Not quite, it seems.
You’ll talk with some who’ll listen to
their dreams and yours. O stay alive
good lady. We all have need of you
and every book of fine poems
from the fecund fingers of your writing hand.

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