Wednesday, 6 November 2013


I will not love you,
It is quite decided.
It is unnecessary to do so,
Do you not agree?

Nor will it suffice to satisfy,
or elicit an equal flight
Of dizzy fancy from your own heart.
You are surfeit of this. Jaded.
Love bores the erudite

Besides, if I loved you
It would be so very trite
And provincial of me;
For what value could I offer up?
Embarrassing sincerity:
Just another tawdry bauble
To display or adorn,
Tossed in a box;
Or pierced with a thorn
To hang on a wall
Beside other
Brighter offerings to your pride.

Here: you can play with my mind,
But you will from me have not a spark,
Of tremulous tenderness yielded up
Cheaply from a deeper part;
Nor have you the wherewith all
To barter for my heart.
For that…Oh that in itself is quite an art!

Would you be a dark merchant
And sit cross-legged
On some thread-bare carpet
Sifting thriftily through the bent
And sticky coins of soured dreams
And old pains?

“Oh Allah be my witness!” the man exclaims
“I have no more than this to trade!”
Thus do some seek to lower
The asking price
On one slightly used
And battered female heart.

Manuela Cardiga

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