Friday, August 14, 2009

The Tarot Cards

Back then when we were young and after I'd had a lover or two
I wasn't looking for a man at all but if I were I'd want one
Who didn't want to fuck me
Like looking for an honest man in college or a bar or a truck stop

But you found the glance with slit eye and the slow slide down
Found your body of great richness and utility anywhere like
The wall of the bar just outside the back door, the bushes plumped
Like pillows for your hips. Strange men, old friends, ex lovers,
All comers. You fascinated me so unlike were we

I was the girl they all wanted to fuck
You were the woman who fucked them all
Married with children, it didn't change a thing
You were the one expelled from the campus coffee shop
Obscene language, solicitation and other outrages and I
Worshipped you. Let me live with you.
I'll watch the children, I'll wash the dishes, I'll be the nanny
I'll be the bait and then we'll switch

You read the Tarot Cards and you were the Queen of Cups.
You drew the The Tower reversed, bodies flying through the air
You insisted I was only a Page. I'd had no children. I would always
Be a page, a child, childless, no matter what my age. A Page
I drew the Devil upright and the Hierophant reversed

For a costume party you would go as Medusa, and knew
Enough to call me Persephone. I was that girl, the mere Page
Carried to the underworld by Hades, another name for Daddy
(I told no one your real identity, Daddy, King of the Underworld)
And yet the Queen of Cups knew the ghost of you in the circles
Under my troubled eyes too damn pretty to really be seen.
Ice girl Holding The Devil's hand wearing a well pressed black dress
The Page of Swords in love with the Queen of Cups
I still am.


Stella by Starlight said...

I have chills up my spine reading that. I've always resonated with the Queen of Swords and the Hanged Man. This poem is analogous to T.S. Eliot's “The Wasteland.” I've always believed that no one should live their lives without reading that poem.

I was glued to the line Carried to the underworld by Hades, another name for Daddy. Such a powerful line. Utah, your writing awes me.

PENolan said...

Beautifully crafted, dear.

Randal Graves said...

I definitely dig this quite much, worthy of being pilfered.

darkblack said...

Oh, you gypsy temptress.


Well penned, Utah.

Utah Savage said...

Stella, I can't tell you just how much I've missed you. TS Eliot is at the top of my poetic pantheon, so that is quite a compliment. See my taking a deep bow?

MS Nolan, Thank you. I know you know what "beautifully crafted" means and what it means to me. This was written in a bout twenty minutes right after my guests left. The visit took me right back to my 17 year old self.

Randal, High praise, coming from you. Thank you. I'll lease the "you bastard" of another time.

Darkblack, you make my heart sing.

themom said...

Excellent my friend. I have never been into the Tarot cards, and admittedly have no idea how they are read. You are so smart!!!

Mauigirl said...

Utah, this was wonderful...

Stella by Starlight said...

So many fans... such excellent taste...

I've missed you, also. I owe you an email.

In for those who have or have not read The Wasteland, here's the link. The poem is a masterpiece.

Here is Belladonna, the Lady of the Rocks,
The lady of situations.
Here is the man with three staves, and here the Wheel,
And here is the one-eyed merchant, and this card,
Which is blank, is something he carries on his back,
Which I am forbidden to see. I do not find
The Hanged Man. Fear death by water.
I see crowds of people, walking round in a ring.
Thank you. If you see dear Mrs. Equitone,
Tell her I bring the horoscope myself:
One must be so careful these days.

Utah Savage said...

To be compared to Eliot and "The Wasteland" makes me blush with delight. He is my favorite poet (even if not the finest man) still one very fine poet. There are times I find myself inside a T.S. Eliot poem as if possessed and it is always within a few lines from "The Lovesong of J Alfred Prufrock," and not always the same lines. I hear the words inside my head in certain moments like a distant and familiar echo.

Sherry said...

wonderfully done. wonderful to read.

Vigilante said...

Good! Over my head. U have email.

Stella by Starlight said...

Yes, Prufrock! You bring back long, forgotten memories of when I revered literature.

I grow old,
I grow old,
I shall wear my trousers rolled
As I stride along the beach
Hearing mermaids singing each to each
I do not think they will sing to me."

Even better that you didn't need Ezra Pound to edit your work. That's another plus. Don't blush—please take pride in your writing, which speaks to us all.