Love and Miss Marilyn Monroe


Delmore Schwartz

(after Spillane)
Let us be aware of the true dark gods
Acknowledging the cache of the crotch
The primitive pure and powerful pink and grey
                   private sensitivities
Wincing, marvellous in their sweetness, whence rises
                   the future.
Therefore let us praise Miss Marilyn Monroe.
She has a noble attitude marked by pride and candor
She takes a noble pride in the female nature and torso
She articulates her pride with directness and exuberance
She is honest in her delight in womanhood and manhood.
She is not a great lady, she is more than a lady,
She continues the tradition of Dolly Madison and Clara
When she says, "any woman who claims she does not like
                   to be grabbed is a liar!"
Whether true or false, this colossal remark
                   states a dazzling intention...
It might be the birth of a new Venus among us
It atones at the very least for such as Carrie Nation
For Miss Monroe will never be a blue nose,
          and perhaps we may hope
That there will be fewer blue noses because
          she has flourished --
Long may she flourish in self-delight and the joy
          of womanhood.
A nation haunted by Puritanism owes her homage and
Let us praise, to say it again, her spiritual pride
And admire one who delights in what she has and is
(Who says also: "A woman is like a motor car:
          She needs a good body."
And: "I sun bathe in the nude, because I want
          to be blonde all over.")
This is spiritual piety and physical ebullience
This is vivid glory, spiritual and physical,
Of Miss Marilyn Monroe.

Delmore Schwartz (1913 - 1966) was a truly tragic American poet who never completely realized his potential. He is the Humbolt of Saul Bellow's famous 1975 novel "Humbolt's Gift".