But in "The Christmas Roses" Jarrell's idea of femininity is crucially different from his earlier vision of the gaping pythoness
; it is much closer to his poems of childhood vulnerability.
Raine's many volumes of poems include The Pythoness
(1949), The Hollow Hill (1965), The Lost Country (1971), On a Deserted Shore(1973), The Oval Portrait (1977), The Oracle in the Heart, and Other Poems, 1975-1978 (1980), Collected Poems, 1935-1980 (1981), The Presence: Poems 1984-87 (1987), Autobiographies (1991), and Living with Mystery (1992).
It was the priests of Apollo who, like latter-day psychomusicometricians, stood apart watching the Pythoness
in her trance: it was they who pretended to make sense of her protocol report of her experience.
Aytoun's portrayal of the poet as an oracularly raving Pythoness
"'foaming at the mouth, her eyes goggling, her breasts heaving, her voice indistinguishable and shrill.'" Johnston's examples are convincing, if selective: one could easily construct a much more heroic set of recurrent signifiers for the poet from a different set of reviews and critical commentaries than she chooses, written by her many defenders, ranging from Margaret Fuller to Oscar Wilde.
Paglia gets no little pleasure out of naming her personae: There's the male heroine (epitomized by Coleridge's ancient mariner); the vampire/femme fatale (Mona Lisa, Spenser's Duessa, Coleridge's Geraldine); the androgyne of manners (all of the "young lovers" in The Importance of Being Earnest, and naturally Wilde himself); the court hermaphrodite; the English epicene; the Gorgon; the Great Mother; the android; the manufactured object; Mercurius; and the Pythoness