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Eunice Tietjens: Woman

 tietjenseunice005

 

Eunice Tietjens

(1884 – 1944)

 

Woman

 

Strangely the sight of you moves me.

I have no standard by which to appraise you; the outer

shell of you is all I know.

Yet irresistibly you draw me.

 

Your small plump body is closely clad in blue brocaded

satin. The fit is scrupulous, yet no woman’s figure

is revealed. You are decorously shapeless.

Your satin trousers even are lined with fur.

Your hair is stiff and lustrous as polished ebony, bound

at the neck in an adamantine knot, in which dull

pearls are encrusted.

 

Your face is young and round and inscrutably alien.

Your complexion is exquisite, matte gold over-lying

blush pink, textured like ripe fruit.

Your nose is flat, the perfect nose of China.

Your eyes–your eyes are witchery!

The blank curtain of your upper lid droops sharply on

the iris, and when you smile the corners twinkle

upward.

It is your eyes, I think, that move me.

They are so bright, so black!

They are alert and full of curiosity as the eyes of a

squirrel, and like the eyes of a squirrel they have

no depth behind them.

They are windows opening on a world as small as your

bound feet, a world of ignorances, and vacuities,

and kitchen-gods.

 

And yet your eyes are witchery. When you smile you

are the woman-spirit, adorable.

 

I cannot appraise you, yet strangely the sight of you

moves me.

I believe that I shall dream of you.

 

(Pa-tze-kiao)

Eunice Tietjens poetry

fleursdumal.nl magazine

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