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Monthly Archives: February 2009

Rodin’s “The Kiss”

A twelve-inch copy, bronze,

gift from the man I married,


set on mahogany shelves

in our cleanest room,


the place I love to dust,

fingering some oval frames,


the glass-blown peacock,

one latticed ivory comb.


This Thursday morning with

lambswool and lemon spray


I tend to my statue, its swells

and hollows, its bare limbs —


shoulders and elbows, three knees

in relief, four embedded feet.


It is always the last thing

I take hold of, pull closer,


weigh in my hands, imagine as

the size of life. How many wives


realize that dust comes from

the skin a body loses? Here


we still are, he and I, spouses

who go about our lives, who


desire and part, part and desire,

touching what we love,


and thus The Kiss — their lips

meeting the flesh we shed.





This poem was inspired by the statue The Kiss by Auguste Rodin (1840-1917). A small copy of the statue is kept in our home. This poem was one of 14 poems and 14 photographs accepted for the curated group exhibition Be Mine at the Alliance Gallery (Narrowsburg, NY) from January 31 through February 14, 2009. The poem was published first in the paper program of that exhibition.


My goal when composing any poem is to craft a passage of spoken language in which sound is at least as alluring as sense. For a longer discussion, read the comment beneath this blog entry.


This poem is mostly fact. For a longer discussion, read the comment beneath this blog entry.


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