“Queen of Sheba”

From the work in progress:  “White Cranes of Heaven”.

Queen of Sheba

She walked right by me, Queen of Sheba–

Black skin glinting like steel in the sun,

Proud breasts  with prouder nipples

Jutting black rubies, points east to west.

Turbaned head hitting the North Star

Jeweled feet the South Pole,

All space between

Guarded by curved fangs,

Dangerous territory, alien ground.

Tattooed ribbons flowed down arms

Black snakes with sensuous intent.

The sun shone on gold- tipped teeth

Beacons between dark, stained lips,

Showed rarely a smile, more of a sneer.

Kohl eyes flashed disdain,

Measured her vast urban jungle

From cracked sidewalks littered

With the broken shards of broken lives,

To burnt out neon signs of tumbled pool halls.

I offered the most honeyed of fruits,

Celestial music of spinning spheres

Jewels of glowing stars

Captured in baskets for her fondling,

Brought to earth to surround with

Their undeniable glory-

An aura of delight, honor, cosmic majesty.

Ah, Cruel Queen of Sheba!

No glance in my direction.

She had other fish to fry

Though I promised her the wealth,

Wisdom of Solomon.

Jane Kohut-Bartels

Copyrighted, 2010

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4 Responses to ““Queen of Sheba””

  1. Margie Says:

    I’m so glad you posted this one again – it’s my favorite!

    How have you been managing the heat the past few weeks? I’ve been staying in, except for going to get the kids off the schoolbus. My gardens are shriveling, we’re trying to water but I’m afraid it’s useless. I am hoping for some relief soon!

    Reading your poetry has been a lovely distraction!


  2. ladynyo Says:

    Hi Margie!

    I’m so glad you like this poem….I did some rework on it this morning….tenses, lol! but I am going to post a blog entry soon on poetry writing….something that Lawrence Durrell sparked….about poetry is better being eaten than read….LOL!

    Heat! Oh Lord, girl…don’t even go there….It’s horrible….heat index around 110 today expected…and no rain at all….for a while. A short thunderburst and then nothing for days. Only serves to increase the humidity.

    I think this is what we are supposed to do IF we can…stay indoors. We ac’ed the bedroom and my studio….because there was no way to sleep or work here.

    The downstairs is pretty cool until about 1pm…and then I retire to the bedroom. Read and that is about all.

    Tried to rake dried, shriveled lawn waste this morning very early, but by 9am was dripping with sweat. We need to seriously reseed the front lawn…but hell, what is the use in this weather??

    I think it is a serious health issue, this extreme heat. For most of us, and especially the children. My son is on a destroyer, and hopefully he is coping with the heat. Norfolk, Va. is getting a horrible dose of it.

    Here in the deep south, people wear straw bonnets, and have umbrellas….to protect from the sun. I think it’s just prudent to NOT go out there.

    Bill Penrose in Arizona sez that the sun out there until September is a real health hazard…people get blistered very fast with a minimum of exposure.

    I have turned my hens loose into my garden because they have nothing to eat except feed…so at least they will weed it for me….hopefully. A few tomatoes, cukes, peppers are nothing to pay for this.

    Funny, just for when we are able to go out and do something with our roses….??? I bought Rosetone Rose food last week….expensive, and it only does about 10 roses at the most….but! the main two ingredients were ‘chicken feathers and chicken manure’.

    Hell, I have that aplenty! I fill a rubber trudge with water and put in a 1/2 bucket of manure and mix….and decant onto all plants that stand still.

    And it’s free. LOL!.

    But~~ I bought a “Pear Cocktail” tree yesterday and a Meyer Lemon Tree….the pear tree has three different pears on it….Bartlett, Kieffer, Moonglow….and the Lemon tree has loads of unripe lemons. I am watching that damn squirrel in the Maple Tree carefully. He and his buddies got my apple/plum/peach crop this year. Didn’t even share.

    Thanks for reading, Coz…and for leaving a comment. I was going to email you soon to see how you were holdin’ up.


  3. Malcolm Miller Says:

    I sympathise with your suffering in the heat, though here in a very cold winter it’s nice to think of a bit of warmth! I liked the improved poem, and, of course, the lovely illustration. I remember reading it before, and was pleased to see this version.


  4. ladynyo Says:

    Thank you, Malcolm, for reading this entry.

    Actually, it’s ‘improved’ only a very little. Tenses, which seem to be my bugaboo.

    I am still working on the last stanza for a more dynamic rhythm.

    I am one poet who never really thinks that my poetry is poured in concrete. There are exceptions, but something like this certainly is more movable, fluid. Some poems can be improved over the years with perspective and growth.

    Lady Nyo


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