The Resurrection Of The Tattooed Girl

A poem by Edward Powys Mathers

Her hands are filled with what I lack,
And on her arms are pictures,
Looking like files of ants forsaking the battalions,
Or hail inlaid by broken clouds on green lawns.

She fears the arrows of her proper eyes
And has her hands in armour.

She has stretched her hands in a cup to me,
Begging for my heart.
She has circled me with the black magic of her brows
And shot small arrows at me.

The black curl that lies upon her temple
Is a scorpion pointing his needle at the stars.

Her eyes seem tight, tight shut;
But I believe she is awake.

From the Arabic of Yazid Ebn Moauia (seventh century).

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