• Sex, as they harshly call it,
      I fell into this morning
      at ten o'clock, a drizzling hour
      of traffic and wet newspapers.
      I thought of him who yesterday
      clearly didn't
      turn me to a hot field
      ready for plowing,
      and longing for that young man
      pierced me to the roots
      bathing every vein, etc.
      All day he appears to me
      touchingly desirable,
      a prize one could wreck one's peace for.
      I'd call it love if love
      didn't take so many years
      but lust too is a jewel
      a sweet flower and what
      pure happiness to know
      all our high-toned questions
      breed in a lively animal.
    • That "old last act"!
      And yet sometimes
      all seems post coitum triste
      and I a mere bystander.
      Somebody else is going off,
      getting shot to the moon.
      Or a moon-race!
      Split seconds after
      my opposite number lands
      I make it--
      we lie fainting together
      at a crater-edge
      heavy as mercury in our moonsuits
      till he speaks--
      in a different language
      yet one I've picked up
      through cultural exchanges...
      we murmur the first moonwords:
      Spasibo. Thanks. O.K.

Adrienne Rich was born in Baltimore, Maryland in 1929. From an early age Rich can remember enjoying poetry and being encouraged by her father to write her own poetry. In 1951, RIch graduated from Radcliffe College in Massachusetts and had her first volume of poetry, A Change of World published. President Clinton was to award Rich with the National Medal of Arts in 1997. However Rich felt that morally she could not associate with the Clinton Administration and its actions and declined acceptance of the award.

“Adrienne Rich's poems, volume after volume, have been the makings of one of the authentic, unpredictable, urgent, essential voices of our time. All of her life she has been in love with the hope of telling the utter truth, and her command of language from the first has been startlingly powerful.”
-W.S. Merwin

Adrienne Rich poetry collections