Dream Song 4: Filling her compact & delicious body

Filling her compact & delicious body
with chicken páprika, she glanced at me
Fainting with interest, I hungered back
and only the fact of her husband & four other people
kept me from springing on her

or falling at her little feet and crying
‘You are the hottest one for years of night
Henry’s dazed eyes
have enjoyed, Brilliance.’ I advanced upon
(despairing) my spumoni.—Sir Bones: is stuffed,
de world, wif feeding girls.

—Black hair, complexion Latin, jewelled eyes
downcast … The slob beside her feasts … What wonders is
she sitting on, over there?
The restaurant buzzes. She might as well be on Mars.
Where did it all go wrong? There ought to be a law against Henry.
—Mr. Bones: there is.

Analysis, meaning and summary of John Berryman's poem Dream Song 4: Filling her compact & delicious body

1 Comment

  1. JJGould says:

    The relationship between the poet, Henry and Mr Bones is not easily undertood but I adore this poem for its wry humour, resigned despair and realism. How often have I seen a beautiful girl in a bar or rertraunt and thought “what is she doing with him?” but realising that if she were with me, people would be thinking exactly the same! I like the fact that it would take “4 other people” to disaude him from ravishing her, such is his desire, her husband alone would not be enough! But more than anything its the despair that I can connect with in this poem, the buzzing of the restraunt reminds me of the white noise of radio static that you might hear when trying to contact someone in a desperate but ultimately hopeless situation.

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