THE MUSEUM ISSUE
after "Woman in Profile" by Thomas Couture
(1815-1879), Baltimore Museum of Art
I want to touch you, not as men would,
not your white breast,
upturned nipple, trembling,
not the swan-like arc of your neck,
wing of collarbone,
lobe of your ear, unadorned.
I want to cup your face, turn
your head, raise your downcast
eyes, unbraid your hair,
over your bared breast,
button your gown.
I want to wear you
in your oval gold frame,
a pendant on my heart,
as many million women would,
who, like you,
have turned away.
Born in India, Lalita Noronha is a
research scientist, teacher, poet, author, and an editor for The
Baltimore Review. Recipient of a Fulbright travel grant to the
US, she earned her Ph.D. in Microbiology and is a widely published scientist.
Her literary work has appeared in over forty journals, magazines and
anthologies, including The Baltimore Sun, The Christian
Science Monitor, Catholic Digest, A Science Poetry
Anthology, and New Lines from the Old Line State: Maryland
Writers Association Anthology, 2008. She has twice received the
Maryland Literary Arts Award, and awards from the Maryland State Arts
Council (Individual Artist, fiction) and the National League of American
Pen Women. Her short story collection is entitled Where Monsoons
Cry (Black Words Press, 2004). She teaches in the Humanities Program
at Osher LifeLong Learning Institute (Towson University) and in the
science department at St. Paul’s School for Girls. Her website
Published in Volume
10, Number 1, Winter 2009.