A Woman Under the Surface
Poems and Prose Poems
Alicia Ostriker


From A Woman Under the Surface:

Alicia Ostriker ?

Of one substance, of one
Matter, they have cruelly
Broken apart. They never will touch

Each other again. The shining
Lovelier and younger
Turns away, a pitiful girl.

She is completely naked
And it hurts. The larger
Motherly one, breathlessly luminous

Emerald, and blue, and white
Traveling mists, suffers
Birth and death, birth

and death, and the shock
Of internal heat killed by external cold.
They are dancing through that blackness.

They press as if
To come closer.

First published in 1982.