In Ecstasy Poem by Erin Belieu

In Ecstasy

Rating: 4.3


at the altarpiece of Saint Teresa

No need to be coy—
you know what
she's doing


And so did Bernini,
when he found Teresa
in the full-throttle of
her divine vision,
caught her at it,

carving this surrender
so fluidly you expect
the impossible:

for her tang to swell up, ripe
as seafoam, from the gulf
of her flushed and falling
figure. Perhaps this is how

God comes to us,
or should come to us, all:

the bluntly and
beautifully corporeal at

prayers in the Sunday
school of pleasure. Why

shouldn't He come to us
as He did to Teresa? A saint

on her back—
a girl tearing open
the gift He gave her?

COMMENTS OF THE POEM
Dr Antony Theodore 06 March 2019

Why shouldn't He come to us as He did to Teresa? A saint on her back— a girl tearing open the gift He gave her? ecstatic rapture...... a fine poem and a meditation. tony

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Glen Kappy 29 March 2018

Tang? Overlooking that and what appears an unnecessary extra space between the first and second stanzas, I like this poem—its brevity, fresh and vivid phrasing, its wondering. As to what appears her salacious interpretation of the sculpture, I’d be interested to sit across from her over coffee or tea to converse on that. And I’d like Bernini there as well. -GK

2 1 Reply
Lantz Pierre 29 March 2018

I would happily be the fly on the wall for that. I like her salacious take. Bernini was more likely familiar with the look of earthly ecstasy than heavenly rapture. Belieu seems a bit over-angry in the bulk of her other work though. I bet the conversation would be lively, and maybe a little contentious. I interpret the tang reference as (feminist) pejorative. The angel holds an arrow, not a knife.

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Ratnakar Mandlik 29 March 2019

A great tribute to Saint Terresa as also a great flight of imagery employed in modern style, worthy of modern poem of the Day.

2 1 Reply
Dr Antony Theodore 04 June 2019

And so did Bernini, when he found Teresa in the full-throttle of her divine vision, caught her at it, about st. Theresa and her mystical ideas and experiernce. tony

2 1 Reply
Dr Antony Theodore 09 July 2020

or her tang to swell up, ripe as seafoam, from the gulf of her flushed and falling figure. Perhaps this is how A very fine poem. tony

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Dr Antony Theodore 29 March 2020

God comes to us, or should come to us, all: the bluntly and beautifully corporeal at prayers in the Sunday...The Almighty 'God and human expectations. tony

1 1 Reply
Mahtab Bangalee 29 March 2020

Teresa, the sain The greatest philanthropic saint On this earth Served her life to teach the entire world to live peacefully... On her admiration this poem is praiseworthy.. Beautiful poem is penned

1 0 Reply
Kumarmani Mahakul 29 March 2020

Thanks and congratulations for being selected this poem as the modern poem of the poem of the day for second time,

2 0 Reply
Dr Antony Theodore 06 March 2020

Why shouldn't He come to us as He did to Teresa? A saint on her back— a girl tearing open the gift He gave her? beautiful. st. theresa and the poor. tony

2 1 Reply
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Erin Belieu

Erin Belieu

Ohama / Nebraska
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