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The Black Room
all crows are black-hearted
I’m feeling timid: they have so many
relatives, the numbers are with them, irresistible

however, we four sisters are indispensable
we are the snare in the black room
slim and graceful, back and forth we pace
looking as if victory were within our grasp
yet I play dirty tricks, I am mean inside
while on the surface maintaining a girl’s good temper
walking the same old road to defeat each day

unmarried denizens of the boudoir, we are maidens of a reputable family
smiling resentfully, racking our brains
to give ourselves new airs and graces
young, beautiful, like raging fires
cooking up black and single-minded traps
(those who have crossed borders and schemed meticulously
those with sharpened teeth and bolt upright vision
does that face devoid of undulations belong to the husband of my elder sister?)

at night, I sense
danger lurking in our room
cats and mice wake
we go to sleep, searching in dreams for strange
house numbers, at night
we are ripe, ready to be settled
husbands confounded with wives, and so on and so forth
we four sisters change with each passing day
marriage is still centred on choosing a spouse
the light in the bedroom makes the newlyweds downcast
put it all on the line, I say to myself
home is the place to set out from