The Female Principle


(A reply to Blake)

Father dead and mother dead,
Now I come into my joy:
They begot me in their bed
Meaning me to be a boy.

But the graceless, wilful seed,
Sowed at midnight, half in jest,
Would not have its course decreed,
Travelled east instead of west.

Father groaned and mother wept,
Such a romping girl was I;
Raging from their arms I leapt,
Broke their hearts and saw them die

Glorying in that act of birth,
Though their tears pursue me still,
I am served in heaven and earth;
Sun and moon obey my will.

Splendid in my rage, I go
Shaking out my burning hair,
Spreading terror to and fro,
Searching, searching everywhere;

Searching for the one embrace,
Seeking for that man alone
Who dare meet me face to face,
Bed me and beget my son.

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