Tuesday, June 21, 2011

A Walk in Victoria's Secret - Square Egg

The poem starts out with an e-mail from an old lover

there/you were:your e-mail style as distinctive/as the smell of your mouth I still recall,

an arresting and, perhaps, not altogether complimentary memory. I kind of like that normally, we don't think of mouth smells as a good thing. Perhaps, in N's world of resurrected young love, it is different. Perhaps not. The thing I think I love most about this poem is she uses the quirky gift of

a silly, orange-tinted,/plastic cube, trademarked Square Egg Maker,/and how perverse it felt to press the still-warm/ peeled-clean, hard-boiled egg inside, and close/the top, reshaping something as elemental as an egg.

to segue into

I called it Humpty for those few, brief weeks-/the little egg we turned, together, into a child. And N goes on to describe her abortion, musing

A Square Egg Maker might have saved our tiny egg/from Humpty's fate, and set it upright safely on the rim/


But it remained itself, /our little egg: unsquared and rounded, so elliptical and slick,/it could not resist the steep, declining edge of great, failed love.

I enjoyed, for once, reading a unique take on abortion that was all at once, nonjudgmental, private (I felt, as I feel with many of her poems, like a voyeur), regretful and self-aware. When she hits the high spots, she hits them well and truly.


  1. Funny, I found the bit about the smell of the lover's mouth sweet and intimate, and not at all disgusting. (People like to think they don't smell like anything, but they are wrong.) The fetus/egg descriptions horrified me, though--much more than the any of the intentionally disturbing imagery in the Rebecca Loudon poem that Aric just wrote about.

    You're definately right about "private"; it's uncomfortable and fascinating at the same time.

  2. That is quite the comparison, a way for N to distance herself from a painful decision perhaps. The comparison is connected in an awful and relevant way too, aborted embryo to child's nursery rhyme.