The Norman Invasion

Hanging Heart 4
By Tamara Madison

The Normans landed in Britain
in pointy shoes and floppy hats,
unpacked their rich cloth bags
of ornate Latinate words and speech,
and the island would never be the same.
Where once a man might simply think
he now could also cogitate;
where he once looked and watched
he now learned also to observe.
He no longer simply talked or spoke
for he could now also discuss, dispute,
debate, converse. To eat was no longer
a simple affair as the English learned
not just to chew but as well to masticate,
ingest and therefore to create excrement —
feces to later defecate – all this
when there used to be only one short word,
both noun and verb! And thanks
to the randy Normans, the island women
soon learned to copulate, fornicate
and have intercourse when all those crude
and lazy English men would ever learn
to do was fuck.

Originally published in Beggars and Cheeseburgers and appears her book, Wild Domestic.

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