HPN

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Poetry of Issue #8        Page 41

I Vant to Drink Some Blood

I was just eighteen
when I first saw Ingrid Pitt
in The Vampire Lovers –
the décolletage, the heaving breasts –
and learned the word “volupté.”

Embarrassed to admit my crush,
even to myself,
still, I secretly followed her career,
from the minor role in Doctor Zhivago
to playing opposite Burton and Eastwood
in Where Eagles Dare
to the parts in Doctor Who,
and of course when she became a cult figure –
“The Queen of Scream” –
in the vampire films,
Countess Dracula and the rest.

What I hadn’t known
was her early life in the Stutthof concentration camp
outside Danzig, Poland,
her mother a Polish Jew, father German;
her narrow escape from East Germany
ahead of the stasi
the night of her stage debut
in Brecht’s Mother Courage and Her Children;
her rescue by the American lieutenant Roland Pitt,
whom she later married.

No, it was always about those breasts, for me:
the essence of my private cult worship.

Charles Rammelkamp