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Back in the Woods: Second Song of Despair


by Beate Sigriddaughter


I am so crippled by importance,
basic masculine addiction to politics and other
serious things. Money. Competition.
Sex.

We're still in the woods here,
though the princess has long left,
and I am her helpless, not unpleasant
shell.

You don't even notice in all this
chaos of significance. For all you know
she is still in the garden, playing
her flute.

I wonder what would have become of me,
had I remained informed by news
instead of poetry. Khrushchev, Adenauer,
de Gaulle.

Decades later men still meet in the dark
important suits, whether I am
informed or not, while they commission
war

and gadgets of insinuated peace
and other promises, then store abandoned
contracts underground. I cannot compete
with this.

Perhaps this is the secret message
of a fairy tale: The princess does nothing
and still love falls where it will. Or
she departs unnoticed.

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