Saturday, February 14, 2009

A real poem

I am not generally a big fan of poetry but I read this today and really liked it:

I am a Hittite in love with a horse I don't know what blood's in me
I feel like an African prince I am a girl walking downstairs
in a red pleated dress with heels I am a champion taking a fall
I am a jockey with a sprained ass-hole I am the light mist
in which a face appears
and it is another face of blonde I am a baboon eating a banana
I am a dictator looking at his wife I am a doctor eating a child
and the child's mother smiling I am a Chinaman climbing a mountain
I am a child smelling his father's underwear I am an Indian
sleeping on a scalp
and my pony is stamping in
the birches,
and I've just caught sight of the
Niña, the Pinta and the Santa
What land is this, so free?

It's by Frank O'Hara courtesy of a lecture by Zadie Smith, one of my favorite young novelists (White Teeth is terrific).