by Therese Eby
Besieged behind your brass-bound books, dust
embanking the bastion that binds
valor and love in paper confines—
there, my dear, you’ve stationed your trust:
pining for swords in words that won’t rust,
consuming the art, the grammar of rhymes
that flourish in hearts and batter in minds,
seeking the knowledge of ages unrushed.
Yet, since you won’t venture outside your head
or unsheathe the wisdom of all you’ve learned,
but bury your eyes and your heart in a tome,
and since I compete with men who are dead,
my last recourse is (as a woman spurned)
to render, per force, myself to a poem.