This poem was written by Rohana McCormack.
THE WOMAN SAWED IN HALF
In the crystal gaze of a dream I call Houdini,
you are my destiny. There’s no escape.
Night after night I’m the woman sawed in half,
your Beatrice intact, Purgatorio by day.
At your mercy, sorcerer of my heart,
the vampire girl becomes a frantic bat
in contact only by sonar, just out of reach.
your so-called better half, I’m subject anytime
to find myself within your magic ambiance.
You keep me under your hat always ready
to leap into your warlock arms, a woman.
Inside your cape I cling, a velvet mouse,
or flutter from your sleeve, a pretty dove.
At your Svengali glance, I become the girl
with Trilby eyes who steps inside your cabinet,
Presto! a Chagall I rise in a bridal bouquet
of veiled light, drifting until, on signal,
I sing out sweetly from the balcony.
Deaf to all applause, I awake no worse for wear.
While I dandle at your side bedazzled
by your urbane patter, you distract all eyes
from pulleys and wires to materialize an elephant.
Swept off my feet, in the grip of this leathery beast,
I make a drunken exit, waving and smiling.
First appeared in KAYAK, Copyright retained by author
The Indiana Humanities Council is posting poems on Think.Read.Talk. by Hoosier poets in celebration of National Poetry Month. Other Indiana celebrations include poetry readings at the Artsgarden (above the intersection of Illinois and Washington Streets, Indianapolis), performed each Monday at 12:15 p.m. For a schedule of events, click here.