Jaguar - Poem by Lola Ridge
Nasal intonations of light
and clicking tongues…
publicity of windows
stoning me with pent-up cries…
smells of abattoirs…
smells of long-dead meat.
while the sand is yet cozy as a blanket
off the warm body of a squaw,
and the jaguars are out to kill…
with a blue-black night coming on
and a painted cloud
stalking the first star—
I shall go alone into the Silence…
the coiled Silence…
where a cry can run only a little way
and waver and dwindle
and be lost.
where tiny antlers clinch and strain
as life grapples in a million avid points,
and threshing things
strike and die,
letting their hate live on
in the spreading purple of a wound…
will make covert of a crevice in the night,
and turn and watch…
nose at the cleft’s edge.
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