Nude Descending a StaircaseBy X J Kennedy
Toe after toe, a snowing flesh,
a gold of lemon, root and rind,
she sifts in sunlight down the stairs
with nothing on. Nor on her mind.
We spy beneath the banister
a constant thresh of thigh on thigh;
her lips imprint the swinging air
that parts to let her parts go by.
One-woman waterfall, she wears
her slow descent like a long cape
and pausing on the final stair,
collects her motions into shape.
© 1985 by X. J. Kennedy. Used by permission of the author.
Source: Cross Ties: Selected Poems (University of Georgia Press, 1985)