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William Joyce

Portrait of William Joyce by Pam Coulter Blehert, collection of the artist
William Joyce was born in Swissvale, a blue-collar town near Pittsburgh, Pa. He has lived in most parts of the U.S., and Holland, Mexico, West Indies. He currently travels between The US and South and Central America. We see him when we see him, and usually with little warning.

Email Bill Joyce care of The Bleherts

For Women who Moan by Bill Joyce

For Women Who Moan

At the time they were hard
but years later how we men
miss the ones who moaned.
Most wheeze and whimper
like they have a cold
and have to sneeze.
We remember their small kindnesses
but not their orgasms
and they go into the Hall
of Pleasant but Forgetable Evenings.
But the ones who moaned
we waited by the phone
for days for their call
that they would come and moan.

That first growl and groan
that started at the toes
and shook the walls,
it came from the bowels
of the earth full of lava
to wake the bones of the walking dead.
We listened for the moan
the way burglars listen,
suspended on the high wire
of our greed for a witness
to our prowess, we stirred
and waited, stirred and waited
like a pastry cook over a pungent souffle,
and when it came, we smiled
as if a score of Mozart's
had risen from lost archives.

I made fun of a moan once:
"Are you trying out for the Mormon Tabernacle Choir?"
And she went right on
clutching and shaking and moaning.
But the joke was on me,
for what could be larger
than a deep octave climbing
the ladder of release into an explosion
of water and salt and sound
quaking at the edge of all creation
that only a woman knows,
a woman with the soul freedom
to moan, moan, moan.

Some books available from Amazon.com:
Miller, Bukowski & Their Enemies, Essays on Contemporary Culture
For Women Who Moan
Listen America, You Don't Even Own Your Name
The Recorder of Births and Deaths
First Born of an Ass
Questions about Henry Miller that No One Ever Asked Me -- With Answers

Copyright © 1999. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Duplication of this poetry and/or art without permission of the author/artist is forbidden under copyright law. Please ask permission if you wish to use for non-commercial purposes
  Big Cats in Snow Thursday, January 26, 2006