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Pull Out All the Stops
for Elizabeth Irwin

“Dear —,
I love you so much   I had to
write it somewhere   so
I am writing it
on the back of a receipt for apple strudel
in the British Museum café.
(There.
That feels better already).
Can you imagine
what you’d do to me in bed?
You could make me   pay for
all the slights   the irritating
enigmas   the deliberate
inattention.   I hope so.
Make me pay   and pay again.
Like Dante
in that stony rhyming of his
desire to pin Beatrice down
twisting his fingers into her rope of hair
as she cries out through
all the hours   rung by
monks’ bells   all through the long
medieval Tuscan day.
(Except
he never did).
You can’t think   I’m up to constructing
another   heaven?
I can’t think   either.
This process of revision
final and   first touches!
I wrote this with my own hand:
Never let me go again   my love.”

 

About the Brightness of Things

I came prepared to be a shadow:
——————————————
What d’you think you’re up to? Tendering
your hand, which obviously is a
glove? – lady into falcon?

I’m for it –  lo, stooping to the lure –



[Vahni Capildeo (b. Trinidad, 1973) currently holds a Teaching Fellowship in Creative Writing at the University of Leeds. She works freelance for the Oxford English Dictionary and The Caribbean Review of Books. Her books include No Traveller Returns (Salt, 2003), Person Animal Figure (Landfill, 2005) and Dark and Unaccustomed Words (Eggbox, forthcoming 2009)]

Copyright © 2009 by Vahni Caplideo, all rights reserved. This text may be used and shared in accordance with the fair-use provisions of Copyright law. Archiving, redistribution, or republication of this text on other terms, in any medium, requires the notification of the journal and consent of the author.