“Making Love in Spanish”: A Poem by Jennifer Clement

by    /  March 2, 2015  / 1 Comment

Photo provided by Jennifer Clement.

Jennifer Clement, former president of PEN Mexico, is the author of Widow Basquiat, Prayers for the Stolen, and numerous novels and collections of poetry. Jennifer’s life in Mexico has allowed her to experience firsthand the corruption and oppressive free speech conditions in her country. As president of PEN Mexico, her mission was to address the high rate of journalist murders, for which no killers have been found or convicted.

In February, Jennifer was a writer in residence at City of Asylum. She hosted a poetry reading and held several writing workshops at City of Asylum during her stay. This poem, a rumination on intercultural gender and identity, is republished with Jennifer’s permission.

Making Love in Spanish

When I make love to you in English
the objects in the room have no gender
and I only hear our voices.
But when I make love to you in Spanish
the chairs – – those little girls – – chatter,
and our shoes
want to step, with adoration, on the body
of light, lamplight,
that falls across the floor.
In Spanish the tangled sleeves of our sweaters
sigh with soft womanly voices,
and fall like long vines
around an armchair
that has become their master.
The roses bathe and bow
filled with desire for the clock
and the fragile windows
want to break into the mirror.
Here, your pockets worship
my stockings.
Here, the white walls worship
the white moon.
In the dark,
I give you my feminine mouth.
In the dark,
I give you my masculine eyes.

About the Author

Sampsonia Way is an online magazine sponsored by City of Asylum/Pittsburgh that seeks to protect and advocate for writers who may be endangered, to educate the public about threats to writers and literary expression, and to create a community in which endangered writers thrive and literary culture is a valued part of life.

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One Comment on "“Making Love in Spanish”: A Poem by Jennifer Clement"

  1. Jonathan Abayo March 20, 2015 at 2:29 am ·

    I’m so moved with the way…you’ve played with words in this poem ” Making Love in Spanish” in particular.
    Your skills in using literary devices really have cought my sentimental senses.
    I feel as if I actually see what you’re describing.
    I’m an aspired poet, who also learn from other poets, here you are my model miss Jennifer Clement.
    I wish to learn more from you in this area of literature( poetry genre).

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