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Bending The Rules - Poem by gershon hepner

As exciting as breaking the rules is to bend them:
when we do so we don’t claim we’re aiming to end them,
convincing ourselves that we needn’t observe them
once we’ve found legal loopholes, and think we deserve them.

A rule that we've bent is not one we have broken,
inspired by logical promptings of Satan,
but one that as soon as from lust we’ve awoken
we’ll impose on all others whose ways we will straighten.

Inspired by Robert Abele’s review of “The Last Mistress” in the LA Times, July 8,2008:
The heaving bosom, the siren glare and the fated embrace have been reclaimed with thrilling sensuality in Catherine Breillat's 'The Last Mistress, ' the French filmmaker's bid to put aside the extreme sex of her most notorious work ('Romance, ' 'Anatomy of Hell') and indulge instead in the extreme cinematic pleasures of a well-told yarn of merciless desire.Not that there isn't flesh to behold in Breillat's entertaining, elegantly shot adaptation of Jules Barbey d'Aurevilly's 19th century novel, about a cash-strapped young libertine named Ryno de Marigny (Fu'ad Aït Aattou) who wishes to leave his fiery Spanish-Italian lover of 10 years, La Vellini (Asia Argento) , for a society-compatible marriage to mousy virgin princess Hermangarde (Roxane Mesquida) . When one night Ryno attempts to convince Hermangarde's mother (the drolly charming Claude Sarraute) of his spot-changing intentions, she elicits from him the whole of the affair, a flashback encompassing pursuit, lustful submission, bloodshed, grief and cruelty. But because the depiction of Ryno's and Vellini's carnality arrives like bursts of hot color within the confines of an otherwise narratively conventional period costume movie, the effect is appropriately viral in an emotional way - like a path blindly, adventurously taken - and a far cry from the intellectually chilly explicitness Breillat's movies about sexual politics are known for. f you were to view the movie as a contest of libidinous wills, it would seem to belong to the dark-hearted Argento. Her smoky-voiced Vellini, armed at times with an erotically designed spit curl, is one of the more delectably wrought portrayals of the year. Whether ecstatically curling her arm around the head of a stuffed tiger, ferociously licking an ice cream or the blood from her lover's duel wound, or brooding alone in wait, she embodies a spirit of unbridled female sexuality that doesn't preclude love or romance but certainly embraces its power to upend norms and spark gossip. Argento isn't a movie thief, however. Breillat gives her room - even cigars to smoke, a pungent image of assertive sexuality - but balances her feralness with full-lipped newcomer Aattou's near-womanly grace, as if he were the femme to her fatale.
Such role-tweaking is, of course, second nature for an inveterate provocateur like Breillat, but by giving us luscious gasps instead of her usual hard-core shocks, she shows how sometimes simply bending the rules can be as exciting as breaking them.

7/8/08


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Poems About Romance

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