The River Merchant’s Wanton Woman: A Poem

the river merchant's wanton woman

Every 1st line is from The Wanton Lass, a Poem from the magazine, The Pearl. Each Second line is from The River-Merchants Wife: A Letter by Ezra Pound, and the second-last line of each stanza is taken from Hair, by Eve Ensler (from the Vagina Monologues). Every word possessing an L was removed or changed, and the poem was slightly edited for fluidity.

The River Merchants Wanton Woman

by e e a vance

I ate a woman they named Chastity
—my hair was cut straight across my forehead.
With a fat ass, and a cunt, ebony-jet;
She came by on bamboo sticks, chewing horse.
Her quim had itched, and she wanted, I vow,
I ran about the front gate, striking roses.
A good fucking, but she wont say how,
She stood about my seat, scratching with indigo.
You cannot want a vagina the way you want hair.
Derry down.

And we went on staying in the town
She thought of a ruse that might serve as the same,
Two brains, without abhorrence or suspicion,
That she might shag without any shame.
At fourteen I married My Queen,
So a carrot she got, with a point rather rough,
(I never grinned, being shy)
she rammed it and jammed it three parts up her cunt.
bowing my head, I turned to the bricks.
When she fucked me my vagina ached the way a beard must.
Derry down.

spoken to, a thousand times, I never went back.
She admired it so that she oft used to do it,
(At fifteen I stopped staring)
then at dusk the poor woman had occasion to rue it;
I desired my dust to be mixed with hers.
For one day, when amusing her cunt with this whim,
Forever and forever, and forever.
The carrot it snapped, and part stuck in her quim.
Why did I breach the spot?
she said she screwed around because I didnt tease her cunt.
Derry down.

At sixteen she departed I went mad with vexation at this,
she went into far Ku-tō-en, by the river of vexing eddies,
Indeed it was time, the poor woman didn’t piss.
And she has been gone five months.
The woman was in torture, no rest had poor Chastity.
(The monkeys make sorrow and noise overhead.)
So an aged doctor she was forced to get.
He dragged her feet when she went out.
I saw the spiky sharpness sticking into me, my naked puffy vagina
Derry down.

By the gate now, the moss is grown, the different mosses,
The doctor he came, and she, the case,
Too deep to cut them away!
Then with their eyes on, and a very wide face,
The buds sink soon this autumn, in wind.
He bid her turn up, though she scarce was new,
The paired wings are saffron with August
And stuck her petticoats over her button,
Over the grass in the West garden;
You have to eat hair in order to eat the vagina.
Derry down.

They hurt me.
Her breasts she shed,
round her stomach so wide, I grow dead.
And he gave her fat ass such a thump,
If she is coming down through the narrows of the river,
That he made her cry out, though he did it so neat,
you must advise me beforehand.
away shot the carrot bang into the street.
And I came out to meet her
it’s the bud around the rose, the grass around the house.
Derry down.

As far as she, Now a sweep, passing by, he saw it come down,
my hair was cut straight across my forehead.
Picked it up and he ate it, and said with a frown,
She came by on bamboo sticks, a horse.
By God! it’s not right, it’s a damned shame, I say,
I sat around the front gate, eating roses.
These women throw buttered carrots away.
She stood about my seat, kissing with red fingers.
besides, my husband never stopped screwing around.
Derry down.

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