Lady Lazarus

Lady Lazarus

“I have done it again”
—Sylvia Plath
“Lady Lazarus”

I’ve done it again & again—
The same old thing every time

Doing my Marlene Dietrich act—
Bright as a Nazi lampshade

My Weimar cabaret swan song—
The old I can’t help it routine

No longer Blue Angel darling—
Swank in my sexy stylish tuxedo

I’m just a sad old has-been now—
Orson’s mistress in Touch of Evil

Peal off my skin-tight smile—
Beneath it a thousand face lifts

Bombed-out Berlin won after all—
But I’m rather bored by it all now

My nose, my eye pits, my set of teeth—
My sour breath all will vanish someday

Eva had her fervent last wish tho—
To be married in her bunker grave

The same with me in Hollywood—
And like a cat I had nine times to die

It’s Number Nine so Auf wiedersehen—
What a trashy bunch of annihilating decades

What else is there for a million moviegoers—
The peanut-crunching crowd to do?

They want to unwrap me hand and foot—
The big strip tease, Gentlemen, ladies, please!

These are just my hands and bare knees—
I’m just celluloid skin and bones

Nevertheless, I am the same as you—
The first time it happens is an accident

The second time it’s meant to be—
Saying goodbye and not coming back

Dying is an act like anything else—
Don’t expect an encore or big comeback

Even if you do it exceptionally well—
It’s still crummy and it feels like hell

I did it so many times it was like old hat—
I guess you could say it was boring

It's easy enough to be a poet—
It's easy enough to do it and yawn

It's tres theatrical like a cabaret act—
Same place, same face, same brutes

Amused applause from the critics—
Another “Daddy” really knocks them out

I’m eyeing all my scars, my face jobs—
I really get off on cosmetic surgery

I get a nice charge, a very large charge—
Herr Doktor charges more than Dior

I am your opus up here on the screen—
Your Blue Angel in Hoodoo Voodoo drag

My makeup melts, then I have to shriek—
I turn and burn like the Third Reich

How can there be a Blue Angel like me—
Singing I can’t help it all the time?

Ash, ash, go ahead, poke and stir—
Flesh, bones, there’s nothing left here

Just a cake of soap, a wedding ring—
A gold filling, Herr God, Herr Lucifer

Beware, my dears, of men like Ted Hughes—
They eat women like you & me like air

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