Alysa Salzberg

Alysa Salzberg
Paris, France
December 31
Writer, copy editor, translator, travel planner. Head servant to my cat.
A reader, a writer, a fingernail biter, a cat person, a traveller, a cookie inhaler, an immigrant, a dreamer. …And now, self-employed! If you like my blog and if you're looking for sparkling writing, painstaking proofreading, nimble French-English translation, or personalized travel planning, feel free to check out


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FEBRUARY 10, 2011 6:15PM


Rate: 34 Flag


I’m afraid the hard shell
you’ve put around my soft center 
will crack.
Would I feel any pain? 
Would you greet
the sight
of the inside of me
with a gentle glance,
and take me between
soft lips? 
Or would I let you
bite into me
once again?


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Sorry it's not better, but the idea could not be restrained.
You read my mind!

This could mean a mountain of things but guess I will have to think about this one.:)
rated with hugs
Titus - Love how Shakespeare told your story. Not sure what you mean here, but glad you got something out of this.

Fusun - Sort of.

liz - Thanks for your concern. I'm doing some musing. And thinking about nuts, to boot (there's almost always food involved, where I'm concerned).

Linda - I guess I wanted it to be ambiguous - I like when a poem can belong as much to its writer as to those reading it. Take it to mean what you like.

Thanks for reading, guys, and sorry because I was constantly changing and adding to this.
The "nuts" title had me thinking something completely different. I like the line about "soft glance". Wouldn't it be nice to have a person with that kind of restraint look inside and then take you up.
Mysterious, yet relatable. Leaves me wondering...~r
Yes, bite me again and again. I don't pretend to know your meaning here, but it read to me like a statement on love and fear. I believe you've gotta risk it all every time to be completely alive. Now, I don't mean to promote reckless imprudence. If you've constructed that shell because your lover has hurt you, take care. But if you're well-matched and he/she is worthy of your trust. Let them eat!

Uh...I have no idea what the hell I just said, but I will let it stand since the stream was set to flow from your poem.
Hmmmm. Eeeeenterestink!
Rei - You express one of my greatest desires, so well. As for the title, I wanted it to have a double meaning. Because it really is nuts to be in such a position.

Joan - Thank you for your kind words. I hope that however you relate to it, the poem brings you comfort more than anything else.
bluestocking - I love what you said! And I'm always happy to see you on OS!

Matt - Danke!
Can I choose both...between soft lips and biting? xox
Ah, you Parisians. It's always food or sex. Or both.
I like it you're showing a different side!
Mmm ...

Alysa, your lovely poem has me ruminating too.

Well done!
Very nice. I like that it's somewhat cryptic.
Food for thought, huh? There's always pain when the air hits our soft centers.

I like this a lot. There are so many sides to it. -R-
Yes, men start out looking at us like we're delicious till they find out what we're made of. Now I'll say you must be a Trader Joe's chocolate truffle bar. Very sexy, bewildering post.

And Lezlie, I was going to say "Food for thought." Thanks a lot.
Triple entendre. Lots to chew on.
Only you can add the hard far as I've experienced anyway.
The trick in love is not to. (If love enters in here...)
When it's safe. : )
i've been listening to poetry all charge of a regional poetry out loud competition...i imagined you up on stage reciting this to wild applause.
Seems very apropros for Valentine's Day.
Thanks for reading, everyone. I was so surprised to log on and see how many comments and reactions this spontaneous poem got. I’m glad that those of you who enjoyed it, enjoyed it.

Myriad - :-o

Robin – You absolutely can, as long as you don’t get hurt in a bad way.

Cranky – So true…but I’m not officially a Parisian :- (

kate – Thank you. I’m glad you liked it – that means a lot, and I hope if you find a way to relate to it, it brings you something positive.

Elijah – Thanks! It could be….

Harry’s – It’s true, I don’t often write things in this tone. It just came out last night, after some things I’ve been going through, caught up with me.

Sarah – Thanks. It just came to mind that way. I haven’t eaten a nut in a shell in a while.

Little Kate – Cool! I love when a piece of art can inspire another person. I hope if it’s writing, you’ll post it!

Fay – Thanks. I wanted to keep it that way for many reasons.

Lezlie – Alas, I think it might be so. But a pair of teeth chomping down could make the pain even worse.

Christine – Thank you so much.

latethink – I think being compared to a Trader Joe’s (or any) chocolate truffle bar is honestly one of the nicest things anyone’s ever said about me!

Lea – Hmm…I hadn’t considered the “triple” part…hmm….

Just Thinking – I agree in most cases. But sometimes you find a reason to make the shell, though you wouldn’t have ever expected to.

trilogy – Thanks!

Mimetalker – First of all, the way you spent your day sounds so fun – I’m jealous. Secondly, thank you – you’re too nice.

Grace – You know, weirdly enough I didn’t think about Valentine’s Day when I wrote this, but you make a very good point!

Dom – Metaphors are fun but not belly-filling. I say have a sandwich, too!
h. miller said "the monstrous thing isnt that men
have created roses out of this dung heap,
but for some reason,
they should not WANT roses.."

eloquently elliptical, as all these literary elite are.
you get the glimpse into the monstrous symbology.

Yet: beyond the murderous wrath we all have for one another
there is immense tenderness.
How the hell does
who created us,
explain himself when even HE
is brought before the Judge?

I dunno.

"having fun that day, ha" seems to be the answer.

Fun Funny. Fuzzy wonderful.

Fretful fools fuck with our buzz.
No idea what this means, except that I like it and it's definitely about Valentine's day.
h. miller once said, when he was feeling
especially fulla himself
(you know how boys get...)

"it'silly to go on pretending
that under the skin we are all brothers..
we are all\
ASSASSINS, traitors, liars,

for art(if

only if ice.
ice burns like a billion supernovas from
man or gal.

"Or would I let you
bite into me
once again?" a fine poetess asked, once, a long long
time ago...

luckily i have the answer, since once upon a time
or soon
i am a fine writer...:

"Either/or. Both.
i would
ha ha"
argh,disjointed, i was...
as always..

artifice is always morally more than mere sentiment,
we all know this,
but monstrous amorality is attempted only by
autistics or, if they got a following,
avatar poetesses such as a.s.

sorry so vague..playing
to the crowd
This is seriously good on about 6 different levels. . .
Nuts! You crack me up!
james – Thank you for your eloquence and for some quotes by H. Miller, one of my favorites. I don’t think “playing to the crowd” could ever change your gift with words and your originality. I’m honored you’d even read my meager offering, when I think of your own formidable body of always poetic work.

Luminous – Glad you like it….but it’s not necessarily about Valentine’s Day! : - )

Chicago Guy – Thanks! I’m so glad you think so and that you like it.

bob – Har har har! Very well-put, sir!