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(26 March 1942 / New York City)

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Aura

I sit in the black leather chair
meditating
on the plume of smoke that rises
in the air,
riffling the pages of my life
as if it were a book of poems,
flipping through
past & future.

If I go back, back, back,
riding the plume of smoke,
I find I died
in childbirth in another life,
died by fire in the life before that,
died by water twice, or more.

I pick out days
& relive them
as if I were trying on dresses.

When the future beckons,
I follow,
riding another plume of smoke,
feeling the barrier
between skin & air
evaporate,
& my body disappear
like the myth it is.

My cheeks burn against the air,
flaming where two elements collide
& intermingle
becoming one.

Oh explosion at the body's edge!
I live on a ledge of time,
gazing
at the infinite.

Submitted: Wednesday, March 28, 2012


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Comments about this poem (Beast, Book, Body by Erica Jong )

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  • Roseann Shawiak (1/22/2014 1:31:00 AM)

    Love the imagery of this poem. Can see the plume of smoke rising through the words of the poem.
    Can picture you picking out the days as if you were trying on the dresses. Great poem! I think in
    pictures and you have placed some good ones in my mind. Thank you for sharing. RoseAnn

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