Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Virginia H. Adair


Lying entwined with you
on the long sofa

the hi-fi helping
Isolde to her climax

I was clipping
the coarse hairs

from your ears
and ruby nostrils

when you said, "Music
for cutting nose wires"

and we shook so
the nailscissors nicked

your gentle neck
blood your blood

I cleansed the place
with my tongue

and we clung tight
pelted with Teutonic cries

till the player
lifted its little prick

from the groove
all arias over

leaving us
in post-Wagnerian sadness

later that year
you were dead

by your own hand
blood your blood

I have never understood
I will never understand.

Note: This poem was written to Virginia's husband, who after some thirty-five years of apparent happiness, without warning and for no obvious reason, Douglass Adair, went upstairs one afternoon and shot himself. [A. Alvarez; New York Review of Books]

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