Thursday, September 13, 2012

The Body as Garment

The Body as Garment

The shirt, say.
Because it envelops the body
and is a person
you become. As the airplane
made of paper
flies because it is folded,
all flimsiness
forgiven. You are the bone
and muscle to
your clothing’s skin. The shirt
hibernates,
nestled amongst its flock
until you inhabit
it. The shirt, the gown,
the pants see
more of your body than
you do. Can
a reflection be trusted, can
a photograph
be trusted to tell you what
you look like,
can the eyes be trusted to
see correctly.
Of many great designers,
this is said:
He knows how to dress a
woman’s body
,
or She makes clothing for
real people
.
We put on the ghosts they
make for us
and unfasten them, practicing.

4 comments

  1. jesus, hannah, are you aware of what you do? (i don't know how to put it into words.) and i know, i should respond to the poem proper but you give such experience to words and ideas, to existence, that i feel as though i am whapped by a piece of lumber while i read and then totter about. the analogy of shirt to paper airplane is bloody brilliant and then you take it further. you are not talking about clothing here, but rather language itself, i believe, the backbone of human existence and if not language (which is one kind of embodiment of human experience) then the embodiment of the body itself. indeed, what can be trusted?

    i love this poem, hannah)))

    xo
    erin

    ReplyDelete
  2. A beautifully thought-provoking poem, Hannah. I especially like this passage:

    The shirt, the gown,
    the pants see
    more of your body than
    you do. Can
    a reflection be trusted, can
    a photograph
    be trusted to tell you what
    you look like,
    can the eyes be trusted to
    see correctly.

    ReplyDelete

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