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192nd Virtual Poetry Circle

Welcome to the 192nd Virtual Poetry Circle!

Remember, this is just for fun and is not meant to be stressful.

Keep in mind what Molly Peacock’s books suggested. Look at a line, a stanza, sentences, and images; describe what you like or don’t like; and offer an opinion. If you missed my review of her book, check it out here.

Also, sign up for the 2013 Dive Into Poetry Challenge because its simple; you only need to read 1 book of poetry. Please visit the stops on the 2012 National Poetry Month Blog Tour.

Today’s poem is from Toi Derricotte:

Love Story in Black and White

What the hell am I doing
hugging a white man in an apron?
I said it to myself—but out loud! —so that
he pushed me away slightly:
What did you say?
This was the first white man I had dated—
though I was sixty!
It wasn't only that I was holding
a body close for the first time
in years; not only
that he was white.
Our mothers' fears and angers—
heirlooms of slavery—
had hardened my heart.
Perhaps it was the apron. I had never imagined
a white man (not a chef)
come down to that order. Perhaps
the way he met me, beaming,
opened wide,
confounded my expectations
and undid me.
How lovely his body
as he bends to the wise tomatoes.
What does black
and white have to do with it,
our love that's lasted ten years?
Each act of tenderness
amends the violence of history.

What do you think?

Comments

  1. I just loved these lines:

    “Perhaps
    the way he met me, beaming,
    opened wide,
    confounded my expectations
    and undid me.
    How lovely his body
    as he bends to the wise tomatoes.”

    There is so much warmth and hope in this poem. And I couldn’t help but smile at the opening lines; I’ve accidentally said aloud things I thought I was thinking to myself, lol.

    • I really loved those lines as well. I like the tension in this poem as well because of the white-black issue, which I would hope isn’t an issue anymore. I like to think we’ve moved beyond that, but alas, I’m optimistic.

      • I like how photographic this poem is, capturing the surprise of hearing herself utter thoughts she didnt meant to express out loud. That notion, of hearing her words outside her head, caused her to consider the depth of the “issue” and see how love conquered it all. Beautiful concept, beautiful writing.