Opus 181

by Arthur Davison Ficke
Skeptical cat,
Calm your eyes, and come to me.
For long ago, in some palmed forest,
I too felt claws curling
Within my fingers…
Moons wax and wane;
My eyes, too, once narrowed and widened…
Why do you shrink back?
Come to me: let me pat you–
Come, vast-eyed one…
Or I will spring upon you
And with steel-hook fingers
Tear you limb from limb…
There were twins in my cradle…
Arthur Davison Ficke was born in 1883 in Iowa. An American poet and lawyer, Ficke studied at Harvard University and the University of Iowa. Ficke’s early poetry established his reputation as a conservative poet and showcased his interest in traditional styles and forms. While serving in the army during World War I, Ficke met poet Edna St. Vincent Millay, and the two had a brief affair. Ficke died in 1945 in New York.


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