#tbt: Kathleen Fraser, “Les Jours Gigantesques”

This week’s Throwback Thursday post features Kathleen Fraser’s poem “Les Jours Gigantesques” from il cuore: the heart, Selected Poems 1970–1995A Tribute to Kathleen Fraser is planned for Sunday, March 22nd (5PM), at California College of the Arts. The event is co-sponsored by the San Francisco State University Poetry Center and Small Press Traffic. Read more about the event here.



Have you noticed the shadow hovering?
     How when you are in the middle of brushing your teeth
     there is something gathering around the corner?
She is dreaming this thought to a self
awake in the world
when she feels a tug, something like a hand pressing
down upon her thigh
     and she remembers she is naked and alone in the room
     and wishes for her silk blouse
     and the zipper with its three silver hooks at the top.
In her body’s emptiness
a growing sense of intimacy,
the pressure of a shadow in its black suit,
its right hand moving
around her waist, as if looking
for a pocket,
     or the push of a head against
     her shoulder, as though
     this movie from some little light booth
     on the opposite wall was focusing,
     on her, and the image was him,
     his half head
moving towards her nipple,
with the thirst in him, dark
against her white body. She looks down,
     she looks down at, oh, the hand, or is it
     the shadow of a hand
     pressing in on the thigh that is hers.
Her muscles bulge with effort
and become tremendous
in their flex. The color drains
from every part of her, but
     the red mouth,
     holding its shape steadily,
     the scream, at first uncertain,
     enters the air
     and becomes the third,
     the knowing, between them.