Edward Field is the recipient of the W.H. Auden award, the Bill Whitehead lifetime achievement award, the Lambda Literary Award, and is the author of ten books of poetry, including After The Fall: poems old and new, in which can be found his poem, “Mae West,” published by University of Pittsburgh Press, © 2007.
Sweet Gwendolyn and the Countess
The Countess rode out on her black horse in spring
wearing her black leather riding costume.
She was scouting for disciples in the countryside
and flicked with her whip the rosebuds as she passed.
Sweet Gwendolyn in her white dress
was out gathering May flowers.
Under sunshade hat, her pale face
blushed to the singing bees,
and her golden curls lay passive on bent shoulders
as she stooped to pluck a white lily.
The Countess passing by took one look,
galloped up, and reined her stallion sharply in,
high over the modest figure
of Sweet Gwendolyn with the downcast eyes.
She leaped down from her horse and knelt,
laying the whip in tribute before the golden girl.
That foolish one swooned forward to the ground
on a great white puff of dress fabric
and a scattering of flowers. At that,
the Countess rose in all her black pride
and put her dirty leather boot hard on Gwendolyn’s bent neck,
pushing down the golden head to the grass,
and gave her a smart lash across her innocently upturned behind.
Gwendolyn looked up with begging eyes
and a small whimper of submission,
as the Countess pushed her over and threw the skirt up,
exposing legs and bottom bare,
and shoved the leather whip handle between squeezed thighs of virtue,
forcing them apart to reveal the pink pulsing maidenhood.
Foolish Gwendolyn for not wearing panties.
But how could she have known what was in store?
Her skirt fell over her head like petals of a fully-opened flower,
and her legs waved in the air like stamen and pistil,
inviting the bee of the Countess’s tongue
to slip in and sip nectar in the golden fuzz.
Poor Gwendolyn moaned with shame and pain
as she lay back crushing her May flowers, exposed and unresisting,
until the Countess, in full charge, pulled her to her feet,
tied the whip end around her neck,
remounted the big black horse,
and slowly trotted on,
leading the sobbing girl a captive behind her
off to her dark castle.