Comment on this article

Love in the Time of Coleridge
by Elizabeth Iannaci

Don't tell me that my father, vicar-throated
& dreadful, smiles behind his hand
if, on their way to the sugar bowl,
your fingers bump against mine.    He was

born wearing sackcloth, so a new waistcoat
of bombazine won't change his uneasiness
at my bare ankles,   his horror that I might
ride astraddle through the village mews.

Don't compare me to the vast     anything;
nor offer a crystal vile to dangle
from a chain next to my heart, designed
to collect tears you imagine I'll  weep

longing for your return. Never present me
with wrist cuffs of true-love knots woven
from your hair—they would be to me nothing
more than slaver's bracelets.  No. Rather

marry me to the logic of your science,
your natural thoughts.  Don't say I am
a fiery column before you or that
you would cast a veil of softest light

upon me.  I say, language is your heart's armor.
Therefore, speak not.   Only,  embrace me
in the courtyard, beneath the tallest belfry,
under the jarring light of noon.


Return to:

[New] [Archives] [Join] [Contact Us] [Poetry in Motion] [Store] [Staff] [Guidelines]