3 July 2014

Admonitions To A Special Person // Anne Sexton // 1974

Watch out for power,
for its avalanche can bury you,

snow, snow, snow, smothering your mountain.

Watch out for hate, 

it can open its mouth and you'll fling yourself out

to eat off your leg, an instant leper.

Watch out for friends, 

because when you betray them,

as you will,

they will bury their heads in the toilet

and flush themselves away.

Watch out for intellect,

because it knows so much it knows nothing

and leaves you hanging upside down, 

mouthing knowledge as your heart

falls out of your mouth.

Watch out for games, the actor's part,

the speech planned, known, given, 

for they will give you away

and you will stand like a naked little boy,

pissing on your own child-bed.

Watch out for love

(unless it is true, 

and every part of you says yes including the toes),

it will wrap you up like a mummy, 

and your scream won't be heard

and none of your running will end.

Love? Be it man. Be it woman.

It must be a wave you want to glide in on, 

give your body to it, give your laugh to it, 

give, when the gravelly sand takes you, 

your tears to the land. To love another is something

like prayer and can't be planned, you just fall

into its arms because your belief undoes your disbelief.

Special person, 

if I were you I'd pay no attention

to admonitions from me, 

made somewhat out of your words

and somewhat out of mine.

A collaboration.

I do not believe a word I have said, 

except some, except I think of you like a young tree

with pasted-on leaves and know you'll root

and the real green thing will come.

Let go. Let go.

Oh special person, 

possible leaves,

this typewriter likes you on the way to them, 

but wants to break crystal glasses

in celebration, 

for you, 

when the dark crust is thrown off

and you float all around

like a happened balloon.

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