Featured Emanuel Poem: “Homage to Sharon Stone”

As with many of her poems in the book Then, Suddenly–, this week’s featured poet Lynn Emanuel writes about herself as the writer. But this time, there’s another featured guest: Sharon Stone.

In the poem, “Homage to Sharon Stone,” Emanuel is again interrupted in her writing process – not by her father dying (as in the poem “Halfway Through the Book I’m Writing”) but rather by the actress who is hussled from her temporary stay across the street into limos every morning, presumably off to a film set.

A snippet:

My name is Lynn Emanuel.
I am wearing a bathrobe and curlers; from
my lips, a Marlboro drips ash on the text.
It is the third of September nineteen**.
And as I am writing this in my trifocals
and slippers, across the street, Sharon Stone,
her head swollen with curlers, her mouth
red and narrow as a dancing slipper,
is rushed into a black limo.

Film tends to crop up quite a bit in Emanuel’s poems. She explains why in a brief interview. An excerpt:

I suppose film and the visual arts have been to me what, say, video games are to my students. Growing up I would not “see” films, I would devour them, I would infiltrate and become them… Film provided a shadow world in which I participated with relish. It may well be that its “alternate reality” and my ability to access it inspired me to write poetry.

I’d like to think that perhaps Emanuel was entranced by the idea of seeing a film actress outside of her film, and somehow she wanted to invite Sharon Stone into her world of writing, wanted to know more about her because of their proximity for a brief period of time. As usual, Emanuel is writing about the writer in this piece:

I play the part of someone writing
a book, and I take the role seriously,
just as Sharon Stone takes seriously
the role of the diva.

A bit of trivia: Stone was born in Meadville, PA, a small town in the northwest part of the state, near Erie. Emanuel wrote this poem from her home in Pittsburgh, PA.

Here is the full text of “Homage to Sharon Stone,” on Poets.org.

See all of National Poetry Month posts

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