Lesbians lifting bellies?
I did not understand Lifting Belly when I attempted to read it for class. I didn't remember (or particularly care) who the author was because usually authors give you context to start with, because they generally want you to understand where they're coming from. My only hint was that Anne said it was erotic stuff, but I figured she just meant Canzone because of the tongues.
So, it didn't occur to me that either of these poems were about lesbian sex. Now that I loo at Canzone, I can definitely see it there. But I'm still not convinced for Lifting Belly. I'll believe you if you tell me it's about sex, because that seems to work, it just doesn't make sense to me any way I look at it.
At first, I thought that Lifting Belly was dialogue between two people, maybe three. Taking the hint into account, I could see that it would be a love story, maybe even a polyamorous relationship? I let that one go pretty quickly. For the definition of Lifting Belly, I noticed a note in the margins pointing to those words saying -Person? So I took that as an idea as well. Two people and a person named Lifting Belly?
I made it to the part about giving birth (Lifting belly. Cry. Lifting belly. Lifting belly splendid. Jack Johnson Henry. Henry is his name sir.) and a few pages after that small success in deciphering the only thing in the poem I was certain about, I skimmed the rest for important words and gave up.
I really thought for a while that the two (or three) speakers were gods instead of humans, with the way they didn't say the name of things and described them the way they saw them. I assumed there was a male and a female, because that's usually how things are. They didn't mention any pronouns besides "Kiss my lips. She did." so that didn't rule anything out. From what I read, I don't get where it said that it was about love between two women and not between a man and a woman. I could be wrong, but I don't see how it matters in this poem. Unless it points out an issue in gender rights, I don't think there's a point in letting us know that they're both women. If it's real love, it doesn't matter who's doing the loving.