Heavenly Sex is a book of poems (at once memoir and fiction!) about varieties of love, sacred and profane. It is, at the same time, as noted by Robert Bly, a celebration of one of the more unusual father-son relationships. A self-taught Russian immigrant, drawing on a variety of ancient mystical teachings, the father emerges as the book's central figure.
Robert gives an overview of the book:
1. The Law
Opens a bottle of schnapps. “Writer, schmyter,
Unemployed people must make love
at least once a day.
A laborer, twice a week; a mule driver
once a week; a camel driver,
once a month. It’s the law.
This is heavenly sex. Say a blessing—
pray— ‘Blessed art thou, O Lord our God…’
Ba-ruch a-ta Adonai, El-lo-hei-nu…
For your spouse and for your seed.
What is it with you?
I need to explain how to bring a soul into the world?”
2. The Blessing
The soul is the Lord’s candle.
So you say a blessing. And you sing to her—your wife:
Strength and honor are her clothing, you sing.
She openeth her mouth with wisdom, you sing.
Her children arise up and call her blessed, you sing.
Rabbi says if knowing a woman were not holy,
it would not be called ‘knowing.’
So, after a good Shabbes meal—
linen tablecloth, blessed spices,
braided loaves of challah,
a goblet of wine…
Thirty-nine things you cannot do on the Sabbath,
but you can eat. You can drink. You can schtepp.
Make one another happy.
It’s the law.”
Guggenheim Fellow, chosen by Lucille Clifton for a Villa Montalvo Literary Arts Award, author of more than 20 books, including Four Incarnations (Coffee House Press), Heavenly Sex, God is in the Cracks and The Collected Poems (now in...
What I would really like to say about The Collected Poems of Robert Sward would not be a book review. I would like to say, Listen to this! and quote a whole poem, then another and another, just letting the...
UNIVERSIDAD DE CHILE
FACULTAD DE CIENCIAS SOCIALES PARES CUM PARIBUS No. 4
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