"Pygmalion" by Jean-Baptiste Regnault, 1786‘The Art Professor’ by Sheila Mulrooney The Society April 7, 2020 Beauty, Culture, Poetry 4 Comments Pygmalion knew these women all too well; his instincts told him he’d better sleep alone. He took to art. —Ovid, The Metamorphoses, Book X His wife will say no living soul should trust that skinny man. He reads too much and falls asleep at 10pm. He only lusts for crumbling effigies. In dreams he’s called to bed by Hellenistic Artemis through drapes of Grecian white. A labyrinth’s walls protect him as he steals the virgin’s kiss, then lays his hand upon the goddess mould and sees her cobwebbed eyes alight with bliss: her bliss, his living art. Her ivory folds would shield him from banalities of strife and age. He longs for stones to shed their cold— Must only sculptors bring their work to life? Professors, too, can carve a perfect wife. Sheila Mulrooney completed her Masters in English Literature at the University of Toronto. A Canadian living abroad, she currently splits her time between Upstate NY and Toronto. Her work is forthcoming in Dappled Things. NOTE: The Society considers this page, where your poetry resides, to be your residence as well, where you may invite family, friends, and others to visit. Feel free to treat this page as your home and remove anyone here who disrespects you. Simply send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Put “Remove Comment” in the subject line and list which comments you would like removed. The Society does not endorse any views expressed in individual poems or comments and reserves the right to remove any comments to maintain the decorum of this website and the integrity of the Society. Please see our Comments Policy here. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pinterest (Opens in new window) 4 Responses Sultana Raza April 7, 2020 One of the most interesting poems at this time…. the words are simple, yet evocative, and they flow like marble drapery on a statue. Reply Joseph S. Salemi April 7, 2020 Pygmalion carved his wife from ivory because all the women on his island of Cyprus were prostitutes, and unsuitable for wedlock. Professors have a wider choice today, but not by much. Kidding aside, it’s a fine poem, using a classical theme to make a contemporary point. Reply Margaret Coats April 8, 2020 This poem makes me, as an art professor’s wife, ask whether I ever noticed his carving, and reminds me to shed any coldness. Intriguing terza rima sonnet! Reply Susan Jarvis Bryant April 11, 2020 I love the this poem. I like the images it conjures; “cobwebbed eyes alight with bliss” is delightful. The opening sentence had me smiling and the wry wit of the closing couplet had me grinning. Your wonderful sonnet puts me in mind of Carol Ann Duffy’s sonnet from Anne Hathaway’s perspective in “The World’s Wife”. Her wink of a closing couplet reads: “I hold him in the casket of my widow’s head / as he held me upon that next best bed.” Reply Leave a Reply Cancel ReplyYour email address will not be published.CommentName* Email* Website Notify me of follow-up comments by email. Notify me of new posts by email. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.