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James Applewhite
Published: Wed Oct 15 1975
Art: Paul TheriaultEver New (detail), 2022, acrylic and found paper on scavenged wood
Desire

wishes to pass through a barrier. When you are a kid
it is restraint upon hands, then it is awkwardness of
clothes, then it is the yielding solidities to pene-
tration in the body of a girl. The back side of sex
is a dream of something as completely opposite as the
area behind a mirror: you sense hidden around you,
like a body of clear air you can’t see, the possibility
of falling through a knot of blood in your groin into
the body of a woman who is an invisible country. The
sun shines there as in a negative, glossy with death,
so black it tinctures fields a copper green.

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James Applewhite teaches at Duke. He is the author of numerous books of poetry, including Daytime and Starlight and A Diary of Altered Light. (updated 6/2010)

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