My poem defines a woman who retreats to a private corner of her garden after a swim in the pool. She lives isolated in the desert and is surrounded by round stones, palm leaves, fir trees, and small elusive creatures like the salamander and snail. As she comes to relax on this shady side of her house, she studies her shadow on the ground. Slender and shapely, it conceals any flaws her figure may have or wrinkles slightly embedded in her face. She feels empowered by this image and identifies herself with the Germanic Lorelei. Only in this situation, the species she attracts is not human. She lures the petite lizard, the gastropod and other insects who prefer the plants and soil of this climate. They are drawn to her desire for solitude and secretive space. As she observes, this is a spot , despite the arid terrain, where the sun keeps its distance; and like the fabled mermaid, she can remain aloof, translated into a beautiful ideal by her own artistic perception and need.
The Lorelei In Translation
( after a morning swim)
Near that part of her house
where the tree shades a window,
wild grass and rock harboring
salamander or snail
she sits noticing how much younger, smoother
she seems in shadow.
The ground is a mirror
casting the siren on desert stone
as wind dries her hair and skin, the lesser species
drawn to her aloneness. Her need
to breathe in that corner
where the sun keeps its distance; and time
sleeps under the eyelid of a leaf.
Note -- The lovely painting, " Déesse de la Pensée", is by French artist, Marie-France Riviere. Please visit more of her creative and softly sensuous work at her on-line gallery at -- www.griviere.com/expo2000.