Anne Sexton

po_Sexton-Anne2Anne Sexton (November 9, 1928 – October 4, 1974) was an influential American poet and writer known for her highly personal, confessional poetry.

Sexton won the Pulitzer Prize for poetry in 1967. Themes of her poetry include her long battle with depression. After repeated attempts, she took her own life in 1974.

THE CIVIL WAR
Anne Sexton

I am torn in two
but I will conquer myself.
I will dig up the pride.
I will take scissors
and cut out the beggar.
I will take a crowbar
and pry out the broken
pieces of God in me.
Just like a jigsaw puzzle,
I will put Him together again
with the patience of a chess player.

How many pieces?

It feels like thousands,
God dressed up like a whore
in a slime of green algae.
God dressed up like an old man
staggering out of His shoes.
God dressed up like a child,
all naked,
even without skin,
soft as an avocado when you peel it.
And others, others, others.

But I will conquer them all
and build a whole nation of God
in me—but united,
build a new soul,
dress it with skin
and then put on my shirt
and sing an anthem,
a song of myself.