Aphrodite Metropolis (2)

By Kenneth Fearing 1902–1961 Kenneth Fearing
Harry loves Myrtle—He has strong arms, from the warehouse,
And on Sunday when they take the bus to emerald meadows he doesn't say:
"What will your chastity amount to when your flesh withers in a little while?"
No,
On Sunday, when they picnic in emerald meadows they look at the Sunday paper:
GIRL SLAYS BANKER-BETRAYER
They spread it around on the grass
BATH-TUB STIRS JERSEY ROW
And then they sit down on it, nice.
Harry doesn't say "Ziggin's Ointment for withered flesh,
Cures thousands of men and women of moles, warts, red veins, flabby throat, scalp and hair diseases,
Not expensive, and fully guaranteed."
No,
Harry says nothing at all,
He smiles,
And they kiss in the emerald meadows on the Sunday paper.

Kenneth Fearing, "Aphrodite Metropolis (2)" from Collected Poems of Kenneth Fearing. Published by Random House, 1940. Reprinted by the permission of Russell & Volkening, Inc., as agents for the author. Copyright © 1994 by Jubal Fearing and Phoebe Fearing.

Source: The Collected Poems of Kenneth Fearing (Random House Inc., 1940)

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Poet Kenneth Fearing 1902–1961

SCHOOL / PERIOD Modern

Subjects Relationships, Love, Men & Women, Arts & Sciences, Humor & Satire, Social Commentaries, Popular Culture, Desire, Heartache & Loss

Biography

Kenneth Fearing, a well-known proletarian poet of the 1930s, a pulp-magazine writer with several pseudonyms, and a Chicago and New York publicity and editorial writer, turned to writing “psycho-thrillers” in the 1940s and 1950s. His fourth novel The Big Clock (1946) achieved much popularity and was released as a film by Paramount in 1947. Although some scholars now consider Fearing’s main contribution to be in the genre of . . .

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Relationships, Love, Men & Women, Arts & Sciences, Humor & Satire, Social Commentaries, Popular Culture, Desire, Heartache & Loss

SCHOOL / PERIOD Modern

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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