Madwomen, Lilith, breezes in-
to the world of flesh, navelless,
made of Adam’s lesser dust, she
falls into the buzz and hustle
realm of animals. Daemoness
from the willow tree, queen of night
she never dreams that before her,
her husband loved a quadruped
or, some have said, took to his bed
another man. In her original skin,
his wife takes pleasure in a garden
lacking only insight. One restless
morning wakes, unholy boredom prompting
her to ask: Why be a proper housewife?
Never a proper housewife, Lilith
lacks not just domestic art, but
tact, has to cajole her husband
not to force her to her back
but let her straddle him in love like
the Greek witches do. Nervous Adam,
answers, no, gives Lilith a reason
to invent the marital harangue—
to scream out all God’s secret names—
and show her scorn for deities and men,
declare her faith
in skin and hands. She hymns
not Adam but his body, sings
her joy in velvet fruit, but not the tree.
What’s left of her first joy except
the way she questions
all her ex's ways and all his names?
Why call them elk or silkworm
kangaroo or trout?
Beside the Red Sea, Bruha, Strega,
End of all Flesh, she doesn’t wait
for answers, finds salvation in
resisting angels, loving her daemon lilem,
worshiping lascivious hands.
Around her pious men seek heaven;
frail men love disgrace. Mad Lilith
shows them all their God’s true face.