Mary Kane: A Few Rules of Thumb
If a woman takes a poem
into her mouth, she will taste mint, a little bit of raw moon, the beginnings
If a woman invites a poem into her kitchen, she will speak
at length with the dead.
If she invites two poems to dinner, she will know the pull of infidelity.
If a woman plants poems
in sock drawers, knife drawers, library books, envelopes addressed
to old men, she will shudder with pleasure at unexpected moments.
If a woman writes poems
in the nude, the skin in her poems will wrinkle. If a woman writes poems
dressed in corduroys and a green
wool sweater, the skin of her breasts will glow
If a woman argues with a poem
you won’t hear her. If she wakes up on Sunday and continues arguing
with the same poem, a line will fly alongside her left ear, cardinal red
with a splash of black.
If a woman makes love to a poem, no one will be able to read it.
If a woman
makes love to a poem behind her husband’s back, the poem will explode
from a prickled pod like a poppy, a deep salmon color.
If a woman fears a poem, her toes will curl.
If a woman invites the poem she fears
over for tea, she will breathe images. She will spill shadows everywhere
she walks, a poem over her head her very own sun, her very own rain,
her very own umbrella.