Kiss Me Husband was the first poem to have been deliberately written for ‘Anatomy’.
If I’m honest, before I wrote ‘Anatomy’, I wasn’t expecting to write a collection of poems based around a theme or characters. My expectation was that the writing I would do would be based in personal reflection and social comment.
Things changed when I started having a period of a few weeks when, without any prompting, I often woke up uncannily at 5am. Quickly, it became obvious to me that this was an opportunity for constructive times of thought, reading and prayer. I started to read a commentary on the bible book Song of Solomon by Bernard of Clairvaux and re-read the Song of Solomon in the light of the commentary. And then I started writing.
The poem is responding specifically to two verses of the first chapter of Song of Solomon. Verse 2: ‘Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth!’ and Verse 13: ‘My beloved is to me a bag of myrrh that lies between my breasts.’
I wanted this poem to be a bit like fire. If you get close, you get warm, but if you get too close, you get burned. If you want, it’s a simple love and desire poem. If you want to come closer though, its a poem about the vulnerability of being kissed rather than kissing, it’s a thought about how marriage can be a place where knowing someone and being inside someone and empathising deeply with someone can change everything about you. It’s another way of affirming what one of the best writers of the way of marriage in the 20th Century, Johnny Cash, sang, ‘I fell into a burning ring of fire / I went down, down, down, and the flames went higher.’