In the cave with a long-ago flare
a woman stands, her arms up. Red twig, black twig, brown twig.
A wall of leaping darkness over her.
The men are out hunting in the early light
But here in this flicker, one or two men, painting
and a woman among them.
Great living animals grow on the stone walls,
their pelts, their eyes, their sex, their hearts,
and the cave-painters touch them with life, red, brown, black,
a woman among them, painting.
|From The Collected Poems of Muriel Rukeyser, edited by Janet E. Kaufman and Anne F. Herzog with Jan Heller Levi © 2005. Reprinted with permission of the University of Pittsburgh Press.|