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Reading two of Anne Sexton’s poems: “With Mercy for the Greedy” and “The Black Art”

“Need is not quite belief…”

Reading two of my favorite poems: Anne Sexton‘s “With Mercy for the Greedy” and “The Black Art

My friend, my friend, I was born
doing reference work in sin, and born
confessing it.

  1. Essentially a spy. Now, where have I heard that before?

    February 3, 2012
  2. “All who love have lied” (“The Operation”).

    This is my favorite line from Sexton, and it comes from the same collection as “With Mercy for the Greedy.” In college I had a conversation with a classmate about Sexton, where she told me that–in her opinion–had the poet not had to suffer through all of her mental anguish, she would never have been able to write as deeply as she did. I don’t know if I agree or disagree with that, but sometimes it does make me just a tiny bit curious about what kind of details I’m missing on account of my involuntary state of mind (and whether I would be willing to sacrifice it for greater introspection).

    Anyway, thank you for sharing the poems; it brought back pleasant memories of bygone conversations for me.

    February 7, 2012

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