Nowadays, to call oneself a courtesan seems blasphemous to the herstorical truth of what that once meant, considering the delight to which Hafiz hints. In this Persian sages words, though pleasure certainly appears had by shy men and women alike, emphasis on a woman’s poetic skills seems to have mesmerized as much as her maidenly form. When I read his work, unschooled as I am in Sufism, I can’t help but wonder what divine truths does Hafiz hide in the vernacular cloak of his poetry?
I almost imagine that the camel in Erik Almas‘ photograph is being gently led by a woman skilled in the art of love and the love of art. Am I romanticizing the life of the Courtesan as it once was? Perhaps, but that is because today’s standards almost exclusively emphasize sex for hire, not the gracious companionship of a woman of power and means.
One line in the poem – on women knowing touch – strikes me as particularly rich. Just how long has humanity been skin-hunger? Sexual healing has been needed a long time indeed…
And She Wrote Poems
her fame spread,
that courtesan who few had heard of
Shy men could with her what they could
with no one
too sought her breasts
and came to know how wonderful touch
she wrote poems
and left her eyes there for they were
what loved the
Thursday is now poetry day for Modern Love, the juxtaposition of Eros, knowledge, soul and practicum. If you’d like to contribute an original poem or something you found in the nook of an old book, as I did this piece, send it to me at modernlovemuse at yahoo dot com.
Soulfully yours, Tinamarie
©2010-2011 www.TinamarieBernard.com; PARTIAL reposts only permitted with link back to original article.