Verse > Anthologies > T. R. Smith, ed. > Poetica Erotica: A Collection of Rare and Curious Amatory Verse
T. R. Smith, comp.  Poetica Erotica: Rare and Curious Amatory Verse.  1921–22.
By Joseph Kling
(To D——.)

(From A Pagan Anthology, 1918)

I HAVE placed you
In the hollow of my hand
Little toy-woman,
And I gaze at you disdainfully
Or throw you lightly aside …        5
Or half-shut my eyes,
And poetize dreamily
About your dainty beauty …
Or put my mouth
Close to yours        10
So that I see only
The rose-red of your cheek
And feel the soft warmth
Of your lips …
Or whisper half-audibly        15
Of the passion that makes
My blood a tide of fire …
But after all,
You are in the hollow of my hand,—
I the master,        20
And you the marionette …
*        *        *
My soul craves
A nobler happiness
Than passionate kisses
And the feel of soft flesh        25
In my fingers …
*        *        *
Love is a lie …
Any man-animal
Whose lips
Are at your throat,        30
Whose hands are eager
For your breasts
Will drivel with lying tongue
About endless love …
*        *        *
Aristocrats or gum-chewers,        35
They purr, and smirk, and sing-song
Gaze at each other obliquely,
Body to body pressed …
*        *        *
It is best to live alone,
Breathe alone,        40
Dream alone,
Alone with one’s sacred self,
One’s reveries,
And memories,
And heavenly fantasies …        45
Here I sit and think:
The world of women
Will fret me no more;
And an hour from now,
Or to-morrow, it may be,        50
I will be talking to another
Pretty one
And every nerve in my body
Will exult as though
Inebriate with wine …        55
Morbleu! What is this
Insanity of man’s flesh!

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