Ella Fincken: ‘At The Edge of Eden’
My name is Ella Fincken and I am a third-year student studying English at the University of Exeter. This piece is called “The Edge of Eden”. It is inspired by Causley’s “Eden Rock” that so successfully blends the biblical with the mundane and the modern. My poem refigures the Edenic myth of Eve’s betrayal, eating the forbidden fruit, in the modern frame of cheating. Operating from Adam’s point of view, my poem also seeks to absolve Eve of some of the guilt for the Fall of Man that has been part of the basis for misogynistic tendencies throughout the course of history.
Forgive yourself first, then the world. Did you
Hear there is a new war now?
I have no time for the news these days. Everything
is sad – maybe we shouldn’t be.
But you told me you kissed him and the weather
Warn the trees. The fires have ravished ground not
Unlike this before. We are not the lucky ones.
Would you wait? I’ll come around.
Love, did you know anything then? I did not.
God, I did not! But did you have to wear
Your naivety like courage as I hid
Beneath the veil.
It isn’t how you dreamt it, though. When
Beyond our front gate the world kicked
And ached to be heard. Oh darling.
Those lights were never stars.
I never blamed you for that. And
That soul will be blamed enough.
So I’ll go where you go.
I flirted with paradise a while but
Found her words oddly cold.
Where is substance in ocean lips!
I guess you’d know something of that.
But you’re a part of me, right?
And they didn’t tell you this is
A part of us.
It is as much your
bones as the fallen petals are the
you beg. I will not.
This was not the reason I stayed.
It was only ever you anyways.
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