Wednesday, February 11, 2009

yet again..

time to head on over to Radish King for the Sylvia Plath Bake-Off. I suck at baking and don't have a kitchen door, so I can only give you a poem..

Fever 103º

Pure? What does it mean?
The tongues of hell
Are dull, dull as the triple

Tongues of dull, fat Cerebus
Who wheezes at the gate. Incapable
Of licking clean

The aguey tendon, the sin, the sin.
The tinder cries.
The indelible smell

Of a snuffed candle!
Love, love, the low smokes roll
From me like Isadora's scarves, I'm in a fright

One scarf will catch and anchor in the wheel.
Such yellow sullen smokes
Make their own element. They will not rise,

But trundle round the globe
Choking the aged and the meek,
The weak

Hothouse baby in its crib,
The ghastly orchid
Hanging its hanging garden in the air,

Devilish leopard!
Radiation turned it white
And killed it in an hour.

Greasing the bodies of adulterers
Like Hiroshima ash and eating in.
The sin. The sin.

Darling, all night
I have been flickering, off, on, off, on.
The sheets grow heavy as a lecher's kiss.

Three days. Three nights.
Lemon water, chicken
Water, water make me retch.

I am too pure for you or anyone.
Your body
Hurts me as the world hurts God. I am a lantern--

My head a moon
Of Japanese paper, my gold beaten skin
Infinitely delicate and infinitely expensive.

Does not my heat astound you. And my light.
All by myself I am a huge camellia
Glowing and coming and going, flush on flush.

I think I am going up,
I think I may rise--
The beads of hot metal fly, and I, love, I

Am a pure acetylene
Attended by roses,

By kisses, by cherubim,
By whatever these pink things mean.
Not you, nor him.

Not him, nor him
(My selves dissolving, old whore petticoats)--
To Paradise.


Kathy C. said...

I could never bake a scone the way you write a poem.

Radish King said...

Thank you, thank you.

Kathy C. said...

especially since I only ever bake scones from a mix where you just add water...
don't you love it when dingbats like me leave comments?

sexy said...


Radish King said...

You can actually hear Sylvia read her this poem here:


Radish King said...

this link might work better