‘The Glass Essay’, by Anne Carson

Carson, Glass and GodAnne Carson continues to capture (and haunt) my imagination. ‘The Glass Essay’ from her collection Glass and God is a powerful poem, in which a woman reflects on a lost love, the relationship with her mother, her father’s suffering from Altzheimer’s and the writings of Emily Brontë.

Here’s a description of the woman’s pain:

… Woman alone on a hill.
She stands into the wind.

It is a hard wind slanting from the north.
Long flaps and shreds of flesh rip off the woman’s body and lift
and blow away on the wind, leaving

an exposed column of nerve and blood and muscle
calling mutely through lipless mouth.

These are among my favourite lines:

I reach up and switch on the bedside lamp. Night springs

out the window and is gone over the moor.

Or how about this as a description of the morning light?

Astonished light is washing over the moor from north to east.


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