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Reading The Brothers Grimm To Jenny

Written by: Lisel Mueller | Biography
 Jenny, your mind commands
kingdoms of black and white:
you shoulder the crow on your left,
the snowbird on your right;
for you the cinders part
and let the lentils through,
and noise falls into place
as screech or sweet roo-coo,
while in my own, real, world
gray foxes and gray wolves
bargain eye to eye,
and the amazing dove
takes shelter under the wing
of the raven to keep dry.
Knowing that you must climb, one day, the ancient tower where disenchantment binds the curls of innocence, that you must live with power and honor circumstance, that choice is what comes true-- oh, Jenny, pure in heart, why do I lie to you? Why do I read you tales in which birds speak the truth and pity cures the blind, and beauty reaches deep to prove a royal mind? Death is a small mistake there, where the kiss revives; Jenny, we make just dreams out of our unjust lives.
Still, when your truthful eyes, your keen, attentive stare, endow the vacuous slut with royalty, when you match her soul to her shimmering hair, what can she do but rise to your imagined throne? And what can I, but see beyond the world that is, when, faithful, you insist I have the golden key-- and learn from you once more the terror and the bliss, the world as it might be?



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