Song for Ishtar

By Denise Levertov 1923–1997 Denise Levertov
The moon is a sow
and grunts in my throat
Her great shining shines through me   
so the mud of my hollow gleams   
and breaks in silver bubbles

She is a sow
and I a pig and a poet

When she opens her white   
lips to devour me I bite back   
and laughter rocks the moon

In the black of desire
we rock and grunt, grunt and   
shine

Denise Levertov, “Song for Ishtar” from Poems 1960-1967. Copyright © 1966 by Denise Levertov. Reprinted with the permission of New Directions Publishing Corporation, www.wwnorton.com/nd/welcome.htm.

Source: Selected Poems  (New Directions Publishing Corporation, 2002)

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Poet Denise Levertov 1923–1997

SCHOOL / PERIOD Black Mountain

Subjects Love, Relationships, Desire

Poetic Terms Free Verse

 Denise  Levertov

Biography

During the course of a prolific career, Denise Levertov created a highly regarded body of poetry that reflects her beliefs as an artist and a humanist. Her work embraces a wide variety of genres and themes, including nature lyrics, love poems, protest poetry, and poetry inspired by her faith in God. "Dignity, reverence, and strength are words that come to mind as one gropes to characterize . . . one of America's most respected . . .

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Love, Relationships, Desire

SCHOOL / PERIOD Black Mountain

Poetic Terms Free Verse

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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