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Best Famous Anne Sexton Poems

Here is a collection of the all-time best famous Anne Sexton poems. This is a select list of the best famous Anne Sexton poetry. Reading, writing, and enjoying famous Anne Sexton poetry (as well as classical and contemporary poems) is a great past time. These top poems are the best examples of Anne Sexton poems.

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by Anne Sexton | |

Earthworm

 Slim inquirer, while the old fathers sleep
you are reworking their soil, you have
a grocery store there down under the earth
and it is well stocked with broken wine bottles,
old cigars, old door knobs and earth,
that great brown flour that you kiss each day.
There are dark stars in the cool evening and you fondle them like killer birds' beaks.
But what I want to know is why when small boys dig you up for curiosity and cut you in half why each half lives and crawls away as if whole.
Have you no beginning and end? Which heart is the real one? Which eye the seer? Why is it in the infinite plan that you would be severed and rise from the dead like a gargoyle with two heads?


by Anne Sexton | |

Lessons In Hunger

 "Do you like me?"
I asked the blue blazer.
No answer.
Silence bounced out of his books.
Silence fell off his tongue and sat between us and clogged my throat.
It slaughtered my trust.
It tore cigarettes out of my mouth.
We exchanged blind words, and I did not cry, and I did not beg, blackness lunged in my heart, and something that had been good, a sort of kindly oxygen, turned into a gas oven.
Do you like me? How absurd! What's a question like that? What's a silence like that? And what am I hanging around for, riddled with what his silence said?


by Anne Sexton | |

Housewife

 Some women marry houses.
It's another kind of skin; it has a heart, a mouth, a liver and bowel movements.
The walls are permanent and pink.
See how she sits on her knees all day, faithfully washing herself down.
Men enter by force, drawn back like Jonah into their fleshy mothers.
A woman is her mother.
That's the main thing.


by Anne Sexton | |

The Fury Of Sundays

 Moist, moist, 
the heat leaking through the hinges, 
sun baking the roof like a pie 
and I and thou and she 
eating, working, sweating, 
droned up on the heat.
The sun as read as the cop car siren.
The sun as red as the algebra marks.
The sun as red as two electric eyeballs.
She wanting to take a bath in jello.
You and me sipping vodka and soda, ice cubes melting like the Virgin Mary.
You cutting the lawn, fixing the machines, all htis leprous day and then more vodka, more soda and the pond forgiving our bodies, the pond sucking out the throb.
Our bodies were trash.
We leave them on the shore.
I and thou and she swin like minnows, losing all our queens and kinds, losing our hells and our tongues, cool, cool, all day that Sunday in July when we were young and did not look into the abyss, that God spot.


by Anne Sexton | |

The Fury Of Cooks

 Herbs, garlic, 
cheese, please let me in! 
Souffles, salad, 
Parker House rolls, 
please let me in! 
Cook Helen, 
why are you so cross, 
why is your kitchen verboten? 
Couldn't you just teach me 
to bake a potato, 
to bake a potato, 
that charm, 
that young prince? 
No! No! 
This is my county! 
You shout silently.
Couldn't you just show me the gravy.
How you drill it out of the stomach of that bird? Helen, Helen, let me in, let me feel the flour, is it blinding and frightening, this stuff that makes cakes? Helen, Helen, the kitchen is your dog and you pat it and love it and keep it clean.
But all these things, all these dishes of things come through the swinging door and I don't know from where? Give me some tomato aspic, Helen! I don't want to be alone.


by Anne Sexton | |

The Stand-Ins

 In the dream
the swastika is neon
and flashes like a strobe light
into my eyes, all colors,
all vibrations
and I see the killer in him
and he turns on an oven,
an oven, an oven, an oven,
and on a pie plate he sticks
in my Yellow Star
and then
then when it is ready for serving—
this dream goes off into the wings
and on stage The Cross appears,
with Jesus sticking to it
and He is breathing
and breathing
and He is breathing
and breathing
and then He speaks,
a kind of whisper,
and says .
.
.
This is the start.
This is the end.
This is a light.
This is a start.
I woke.
I did not know the hour, an hour of night like thick scum but I considered the dreams, the two: Swastika, Crucifix, and said: Oh well, it does't belong to me, if a cigar can be a cigar then a dream can be a dream.
Right? Right? And went back to sleep and another start.


by Anne Sexton | |

The Fury Of Earth

 The day of fire is coming, the thrush, 
will fly ablaze like a little sky rocket, 
the beetle will sink like a giant bulldozer, 
and at the breaking of the morning the houses 
will turn into oil and will in their tides 
of fire be a becoming and an ending, a red fan.
What then, man in your easy chair, of the anointment of the sick, of the New Jerusalem? You will have to polish up the stars with Bab-o and find a new God as the earth empties out into the gnarled hands of the old redeemer.


by Anne Sexton | |

The Firebombers

 We are America.
We are the coffin fillers.
We are the grocers of death.
We pack them in crates like cauliflowers.
The bomb opens like a shoebox.
And the child? The child is certainly not yawning.
And the woman? The woman is bathing her heart.
It has been torn out of her and as a last act she is rinsing it off in the river.
This is the death market.
America, where are your credentials?


by Anne Sexton | |

The Fury Of Gods Good-bye

 One day He
tipped His top hat
and walked
out of the room,
ending the arguement.
He stomped off saying: I don't give guarentees.
I was left quite alone using up the darkenss.
I rolled up my sweater, up into a ball, and took it to bed with me, a kind of stand-in for God, what washerwoman who walks out when you're clean but not ironed.
When I woke up the sweater had turned to bricks of gold.
I'd won the world but like a forsaken explorer, I'd lost my map.


by Anne Sexton | |

The Assassin

 The correct death is written in.
I will fill the need.
My bow is stiff.
My bow is in readiness.
I am the bullet and the hook.
I am cocked and held ready.
In my sights I carve him like a sculptor.
I mold out his last look at everyone.
I carry his eyes and his brain bone at every position.
I know his male sex and I do march over him with my index finger.
His mouth and his anus are one.
I am at the center of feeling.
A subway train is traveling across my crossbow.
I have a blood bolt and I have made it mine.
With this man I take in hand his destiny and with this gun I take in hand the newspapers and with my heat I will take him.
he will bend down toward me and his veins will tumble out like children.
.
.
Give me his flag and his eye.
Give me his hard shell and his lip.
He is my evil and my apple and I will see him home.


by Anne Sexton | |

The Fury Of Jewels And Coal

 Many a miner has gone 
into the deep pit 
to receive the dust of a kiss, 
an ore-cell.
He has gone with his lamp full of mole eyes deep deep and has brought forth Jesus at Gethsemane.
Body of moss, body of glass, body of peat, how sharp you lie, emerald as heavy as a golf course, ruby as dark as an afterbirth, diamond as white as sun on the sea, coal, dark mother, brood mother, let the sea birds bring you into our lives as from a distant island, heavy as death.


by Anne Sexton | |

Bayonet

 What can I do with this bayonet?
Make a rose bush of it?
Poke it into the moon?
Shave my legs with its silver?
Spear a goldfish?
No.
No.
It was made in my dream for you.
My eyes were closed.
I was curled fetally and yet I held a bayonet that was for the earth of your stomach.
The belly button singing its puzzle.
The intestines winding like alpine roads.
It was made to enter you as you have entered me and to cut the daylight into you and let out your buried heartland, to let out the spoon you have fed me with, to let out the bird that said fuck you, to carve him onto a sculpture until he is white and I could put him on a shelf, an object unthinking as a stone, but with all the vibrations of a crucifix.


by Anne Sexton | |

Where It Was At Back Then

 Husband,
last night I dreamt
they cut off your hands and feet.
Husband, you whispered to me, Now we are both incomplete.
Husband, I held all four in my arms like sons and daughters.
Husband, I bent slowly down and washed them in magical waters.
Husband, I placed each one where it belonged on you.
"A miracle," you said and we laughed the laugh of the well-to-do.


by Anne Sexton | |

The Balance Wheel

 Where I waved at the sky
And waited your love through a February sleep,
I saw birds swinging in, watched them multiply
Into a tree, weaving on a branch, cradling a keep
In the arms of April sprung from the south to occupy
This slow lap of land, like cogs of some balance wheel.
I saw them build the air, with that motion birds feel.
Where I wave at the sky And understand love, knowing our August heat, I see birds pulling past the dim frosted thigh Of Autumn, unlatched from the nest, and wing-beat For the south, making their high dots across the sky, Like beauty spots marking a still perfect cheek.
I see them bend the air, slipping away, for what birds seek.


by Anne Sexton | |

The Fury Of Guitars And Sopranos

 This singing 
is a kind of dying, 
a kind of birth, 
a votive candle.
I have a dream-mother who sings with her guitar, nursing the bedroom with a moonlight and beautiful olives.
A flute came too, joining the five strings, a God finger over the holes.
I knew a beautiful woman once who sang with her fingertips and her eyes were brown like small birds.
At the cup of her breasts I drew wine.
At the mound of her legs I drew figs.
She sang for my thirst, mysterious songs of God that would have laid an army down.
It was as if a morning-glory had bloomed in her throat and all that blue and small pollen ate into my heart violent and religious.


by Anne Sexton | |

Knee Song

 Being kissed on the back 
of the knee is a moth 
at the windowscreen and 
yes my darling a dot 
on the fathometer is 
tinkerbelle with her cough 
and twice I will give up my 
honor and stars will stick 
like tacks in the night 
yes oh yes yes yes two 
little snails at the back 
of the knee building bon- 
fires something like eye- 
lashes something two zippos 
striking yes yes yes small 
and me maker.


by Anne Sexton | |

Hornet

 A red-hot needle
hangs out of him, he steers by it
as if it were a rudder, he
would get in the house any way he could
and then he would bounce from window
to ceiling, buzzing and looking for you.
Do not sleep for he is there wrapped in the curtain.
Do not sleep for he is there under the shelf.
Do not sleep for he wants to sew up your skin, he want to leap into your body like a hammer with a nail, do not sleep he wants to get into your nose and make a transplant, he wants do not sleep he wants to bury your fur and make a nest of knives, he wants to slide under your fingernail and push in a splinter, do not sleep he wants to climb out of the toilet when you sit on it and make a home in the embarrassed hair do not sleep he wants you to walk into him as into a dark fire.


by Anne Sexton | |

The Fury Of Abandonment

 Someone lives in a cave
eating his toes,
I know that much.
Someone little lives under a bush pressing an empty Coca-Cola can against his starving bloated stomac, I know that much.
A monkey had his hands cut off for a medical experiment and his claws wept.
I know tht much.
I know that it is all a matter of hands.
Out of the mournful sweetness of touching comes love like breakfast.
Out of the many houses come the hands before the abandonment of the city, out of hte bars and shops, a thin file of ants.
I've been abandoned out here under the dry stars with no shoes, no belt and I've called Rescue Inc.
- that old-fashioned hot line - no voice.
Left to my own lips, touch them, my own nostrils, shoulders, breasts, navel, stomach, mound,kneebone, ankle, touch them.
It makes me laugh to see a woman in this condition.
It makes me laugh for America and New York city when your hands are cut off and no one answers the phone.


by Anne Sexton | |

The Fury Of Sunsets

 Something 
cold is in the air, 
an aura of ice 
and phlegm.
All day I've built a lifetime and now the sun sinks to undo it.
The horizon bleeds and sucks its thumb.
The little red thumb goes out of sight.
And I wonder about this lifetime with myself, this dream I'm living.
I could eat the sky like an apple but I'd rather ask the first star: why am I here? why do I live in this house? who's responsible? eh?


by Anne Sexton | |

The Death King

 I hired a carpenter
to build my coffin
and last night I lay in it,
braced by a pillow,
sniffing the wood,
letting the old king
breathe on me,
thinking of my poor murdered body,
murdered by time,
waiting to turn stiff as a field marshal,
letting the silence dishonor me,
remembering that I'll never cough again.
Death will be the end of fear and the fear of dying, fear like a dog stuffed in my mouth, feal like dung stuffed up my nose, fear where water turns into steel, fear as my breast flies into the Disposall, fear as flies tremble in my ear, fear as the sun ignites in my lap, fear as night can't be shut off, and the dawn, my habitual dawn, is locked up forever.
Fear and a coffin to lie in like a dead potato.
Even then I will dance in my dire clothes, a crematory flight, blinding my hair and my fingers, wounding God with his blue face, his tyranny, his absolute kingdom, with my aphrodisiac.