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Friday, November 28, 2008

Poetry Friday: Colors Passing Through Us by Marge Piercy

Colors passing through us
By Marge Piercy

Purple as tulips in May, mauve
into lush velvet, purple
as the stain blackberries leave
on the lips, on the hands,
the purple of ripe grapes
sunlit and warm as flesh.

Every day I will give you a color,
like a new flower in a bud vase
on your desk. Every day
I will paint you, as women
color each other with henna
on hands and on feet.

Red as henna, as cinnamon,
as coals after the fire is banked,
the cardinal in the feeder,
the roses tumbling on the arbor
their weight bending the wood
the red of the syrup I make from petals.

Orange as the perfumed fruit
hanging their globes on the glossy tree,
orange as pumpkins in the field,
orange as butterflyweed and the monarchs
who come to eat it, orange as my
cat running lithe through the high grass.

Click here to read the rest of the poem

Lisa Chellman is hosting this week's Poetry Friday roundup

5 comments:

TadMack said...

Such a beautifully sensual poem; even before I read the last stanza (about the time I read about the women painting each other with henna) I was drawn into it thinking of "black is the color of my true love's hair," and all the colors that the Bard applied to this unknown man or woman (depending on which academic school of thought you are on Shakespeare's sexuality).

I loved the cos lettuce about to bolt. The idea of colors going through them was beautiful reminded me of stars shooting through the universe -- it's a huge and ephemeral thought. Gorgeous. I always love Marge Piercy.

Happy Poetry Friday!

laurasalas said...

Love this. I first read it in a Poetry Friday post, I believe, and it's a pleasure to see it again.

And it's a fun contrast to my 4yo niece Lily singing her preschool song, "Red Is Rojo," for us all at the Thanksgiving table yesterday. It goes through all the colors in Spanish, and we talked about purple in particular.

Cloudscome said...

Every day a new color- what a tender gift of love. This is a wonderful poem for dreary November.

Beth Kephart said...

What a marvel this poetry Friday is. Thank you, Vivian.

Elaine Magliaro said...

Vivian,

We must have the same taste in poetry. I posted this poem some months ago--at Blue Rose Girls, I think. It's good to read it again.

I hope you and your family had a great Thanksgiving. I was so busy this week I didn't post for Poetry Friday.