gershon hepner

Rookie - 10 Points (5 3 38 / leipzig)

A Little Bit Of Ivory - Poem by gershon hepner

Her pen she would caress and fondle
while most particular
that after straight lines, horizontal,
came perpendicular.
Of ideas there was not a lack,
they poured out of her head,
on horizontal lines the black,
while ones that crossed were red,
for money was in short supply
and paper, pens and ink,
and so she double-crossed to try
to write the thoughts she’d think.
“A little bit of ivory,
the finest writing brush, ”
she had, and left posterity
her microscopic touch.
With sensibility and sense,
not prejudice or pride,
she wrote while sitting on the fence,
her criss-cross script our guide.
Remember, though, when reading her,
how much her writing cost;
when puzzled by the black, refer
to red lines if you're lost,
for what a pleasure when you read,
believing you are lost in
black words, to find the words that bleed,
and flow red from Miss Austen.

Jane Austen used to save paper by writing horizontally in black ink and vertically in red. Richard Jenkyns has written a book about her called A Fine Brush on Ivory: An Appreciation of Jane Austen, whose title is based on her comment on her writing: ‘the little bit (two Inches wide) of Ivory on which I work with so fine a Brush, as produces little effect after much labor.’


11/6/98


Comments about A Little Bit Of Ivory by gershon hepner

  • Allemagne Roßmann (2/3/2010 6:17:00 PM)

    'Her pen she would caress and fondle
    while most particular
    that after straight lines, horizontal,
    came perpendicular.' wonderful start and very lively image of the entire poem
    Shalom.Aamit.
    (Report)Reply

    1 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • (11/7/2009 6:03:00 PM)

    'And left posterity
    her microscopic touch'

    Rachel Ann Butler
    (Report)Reply

    1 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • (3/14/2009 4:04:00 AM)

    A lovely poem Dr hepner! (Report)Reply

    1 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
Read all 3 comments »



Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?



Poem Submitted: Monday, March 2, 2009

Poem Edited: Monday, November 9, 2009


Famous Poems

  1. Still I Rise
    Maya Angelou
  2. The Road Not Taken
    Robert Frost
  3. If You Forget Me
    Pablo Neruda
  4. Dreams
    Langston Hughes
  5. Annabel Lee
    Edgar Allan Poe
  6. Stopping By Woods On A Snowy Evening
    Robert Frost
  7. If
    Rudyard Kipling
  8. Television
    Roald Dahl
  9. Do Not Stand At My Grave And Weep
    Mary Elizabeth Frye
  10. I Do Not Love You Except Because I Love You
    Pablo Neruda
[Report Error]