Erica Jong

(26 March 1942 / New York City)

Tachycardia - Poem by Erica Jong

In the chest is caged bat
who seeks escape
through the mouth.

He flaps his wings
& the molars shiver.

He flaps his wings
& the thyroid bulges
like a snake
that has swallowed
a mouse.

He flaps his wings
uttering shrill cries
heard only by the ears
of the teeth.

He wants to soar
into the great world.
He is blind
as a bat.

You must convince him
that the chest
is a cradle
& a room
with a view.

Past the tonsils
lies terror.

Past the teeth
lies death.
Past the lips
lie lies,

lies, lies.


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Poem Submitted: Wednesday, March 28, 2012



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