Here you will find the Poem We Learned of poet Erica Jong
The decorum of fire... -- Pablo Neruda We learned the decorum of fire, the flame's curious symmetry, the blue heat at the center of the thighs, the flickering red of the hips, & the tallow gold of the breasts lit from within by the lantern in the ribs. You tear yourself out of me like a branch that longs to be grafted onto a fruit tree, peach & pear crossed with each other, fig & banana served on one plate, the leaf & the luminous snail that clings to it. We learned that the tearing could be a joining, that the fire's flickering could be a kindling, that the old decorum of love-- to die into the poem, leaving the lover lonely with her pen-- was all an ancient lie. So we banished the evil eye: you have to be unhappy to create; you have to let love die before it writes; you have to lose the joy to have the poem-- & we re-wrote our lives with fire. See this manuscript covered with flesh-colored words? It was written in invisible ink & held up to our flame. The words darkened on the page as we sank into each other. We are ink & blood & all things that make stains. We turn each other golden as we turn, browning each other's skins like suns. Hold me up to the light; you will see poems. Hold me in the dark; you will see light.