February 9, 1874 – May 12, 1925
the embodiment of the new liberated woman, … unlimited faith in her own capability
God made me a business woman, and I made myself a poet
Towards the end of her short life Amy had a relationship with Ada Dwyer Russell, and wrote several poems for her.
The TempleBetween us leapt a gold and scarlet flame.
Into the hollow of the cupped, arched blue
Of Heaven it rose. Its flickering tongues up-drew
And vanished in the sunshine. How it came
We guessed not, nor what thing could be its name.
From each to each had sprung those sparks which flew
Together into fire. But we knew
The winds would slap and quench it in their game.
And so we graved and fashioned marble blocks
To treasure it, and placed them round about.
With pillared porticos we wreathed the whole,
And roofed it with bright bronze. Behind carved locks
Flowered the tall and sheltered flame. Without,
The baffled winds thrust at a column’s bole.The TaxiWhen I go away from youThe world beats deadLike a slackened drum.I call out for you against the jutted starsAnd shout into the ridges of the wind.Streets coming fast,One after the other,Wedge you away from me,And the lamps of the city prick my eyesSo that I can no longer see your face.Why should I leave you,To wound myself upon the sharp edges of the night?AnticipationI HAVE been temperate always,
But I am like to be very drunk
With your coming.
There have been times
I feared to walk down the street
Lest I should reel with the wine of you,
And jerk against my neighbors
As they go by.
I am parched now, and my tongue is horrible in my mouth,
But my brain is noisy
With the clash and gurgle of filling wine-cups.
Ada edited posthumous collections of Amy’s poem, including this:
Sappho would speak, I think, quite openly
And Mrs Browning guard a careful silence,
But Emily would set doors ajar and slam them
And love you for your speed of observation
What’s O’clock 1925: The Sisters st2
Was Venus more beautiful
Than you are
When she topped
The crinkled waves
On her plaited shell
Was Botticelli’s vision
Fairer than mine
And were the painted rosebuds
He tossed his lady
Of better worth
Than the words I blow about you
To cover your too great loveliness
Amy would be good company I think, full of brio and delight. She gets her invitation, Ada too, obviously.