FOR ANNIE - Marge Piercy Poems


Poems » marge piercy » for annie


Thank Heaven! the crisis,
    The danger, is past,
And the lingering illness
    Is over at last--
And the fever called "Living"
    Is conquered at last.

Sadly, I know
    I am shorn of my strength,
And no muscle I move
    As I lie at full length--
But no matter!--I feel
    I am better at length.

And I rest so composedly,
    Now, in my bed,
That any beholder
    Might fancy me dead--
Might start at beholding me,
    Thinking me dead.

The moaning and groaning,
    The sighing and sobbing,
Are quieted now,
    With that horrible throbbing
At heart:--ah, that horrible,
    Horrible throbbing!

The sickness--the nausea--
    The pitiless pain--
Have ceased, with the fever
    That maddened my brain--
With the fever called "Living"
    That burned in my brain.

And oh! of all tortures
    That torture the worst
Has abated--the terrible
    Torture of thirst
For the naphthaline river
    Of Passion accurst:--
I have drank of a water
    That quenches all thirst:--

Of a water that flows,
    With a lullaby sound,
From a spring but a very few
    Feet under ground--
From a cavern not very far
    Down under ground.

And ah! let it never
    Be foolishly said
That my room it is gloomy
    And narrow my bed;
For man never slept
    In a different bed--
And, to sleep, you must slumber
    In just such a bed.

My tantalized spirit
    Here blandly reposes,
Forgetting, or never
    Regretting, its roses--
Its old agitations
    Of myrtles and roses:

For now, while so quietly
    Lying, it fancies
A holier odor
    About it, of pansies--
A rosemary odor,
    Commingled with pansies--
With rue and the beautiful
    Puritan pansies.

And so it lies happily,
    Bathing in many
A dream of the truth
    And the beauty of Annie--
Drowned in a bath
    Of the tresses of Annie.

She tenderly kissed me,
    She fondly caressed,
And then I fell gently
    To sleep on her breast--
Deeply to sleep
    From the heaven of her breast.

When the light was extinguished,
    She covered me warm,
And she prayed to the angels
    To keep me from harm--
To the queen of the angels
    To shield me from harm.

And I lie so composedly,
    Now, in my bed,
(Knowing her love)
    That you fancy me dead--
And I rest so contentedly,
    Now in my bed
(With her love at my breast).
    That you fancy me dead--
That you shudder to look at me,
    Thinking me dead:--

But my heart it is brighter
    Than all of the many
Stars in the sky,
    For it sparkles with Annie--
It glows with the light
    Of the love of my Annie--
With the thought of the light
    Of the eyes of my Annie.