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Pearls

Written by: Bernadette Geyer | Biography
 | Quotes (1) |
 And so I look back
still thinking of her
with painful heart,
this clench of inner flesh.

 —Kakinomoto Hitomaro
 from Manyoshu



*

Praise the irritant, that genesis,
implanted within the soft
and malleable animal that bore you.

*

Your brethren strung around my neck,
dangling from my earlobes.
The imperfections the jeweler slights, I praise.

*

Artifact of a biological process,
why do we expect
symmetry from a grain of sand?

*

Praise the oblong beauty
of you, solidified raindrops,
your stony quietude.

*

Let me praise the waters that bestow
your milky luster,
worshipped to ensure a bountiful hunt.

*

Manyoshu poems praised the ama,
female divers, who collected you,
as gently as quail eggs.

*

Let me rub you against my teeth to test
the veracity of you, roll you
around my tongue to weigh your heft.

*

The heart clenches, hides its moon
among clouds. Would that I, too, could build
a radiant world around a bitter nucleus.



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