from Quatrains: Second Hundred

By Patrizia Valduga Patrizia Valduga

Translated By Geoffrey Brock


I have always been the way I am
even when I wasn't the way I am
and none can ever know the way I am
because I am not merely the way I am


Him or someone else, what's it to me
if every time I'm lonely afterward?
Alone here with my moribility . . .
if there only were such a lovely word . . .


These hemorrhoids, this bleeding from behind . . .
I'm spilling out of all my holes—yes, all.
My ass is wrecked . . . (My speech is so refined . . .)
There ought to be a plumber I could call.


You want to die with me, you dumb shit?
Excavate my heart with your shovel?
This is getting to be a hell of a habit.
Want me to swear on my knees? Grovel?

Source: Poetry (December 2007).


This poem originally appeared in the December 2007 issue of Poetry magazine

December 2007
 Patrizia  Valduga


Patrizia Valduga's latest collection, published by Einaudi, is Prima Antologia.

Continue reading this biography

Poems by Patrizia Valduga

Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Living, The Body, Nature, Growing Old, Relationships, Men & Women

Poetic Terms Rhymed Stanza

Report a problem with this poem

Your results will be limited to content that appeared in Poetry magazine.

Search Every Issue of Poetry

Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

This poem has learning resources.

This poem is good for children.

This poem has related video.

This poem has related audio.