express the value of life
in lines and
charcoal.

Add the girl’s lids and
tinted lashes,
fixed eyebrows,
nose.
her lace collar under
overblown cloak.
Hair tucked beneath hood,
chin tucked to neck,
subtract her gloom
with an upturned lip..
Highlight her cheekbones in rouge.
Add breath to an otherwise
achromatic lover.

Add her troubled partner in the backdrop:
blue-gray with a hint of black at the corners,
small silhouette of a rainstorm
receding over the edge of the horizon.
Add some balance to a ruminating giant.
Subtract her moans.
Erase her nose.
Sharpen the clavicle.
Thin the waist.
Add some plum to the lips.
Add some gaunt to her face.
Add a remark.
“This will not do.”

Grab the Hi-Polymer.
Try to capture the gleam
of mistakes everywhere;
birthmarks, pencil marks, oil sheen,
eraser flakes,
lines that are furrows or scars or
wrinkles, ruddy blotches
on the thighs,
dry skin on the feet,
swan’s neck,
bucked teeth,
knife marks and a
revised smile.
Never trust a man.

She is flawless.
Precise.
Analogized you.
Contrast to your optimism;
your bubble of assurance
that is dominating,
that denies a compact or an inventory
and drawn in shady undertones
to hide complicated desires.

Proof of hidden bruise
shoved deep inside the confines
of gusto and canvas
come to life in the luster of pencil dust
and uncomplicated process,
stretched wide
for the world to admire.
A deflated mirror.

She still has all her freckles
and you are noticing
a few things
about yourself.

“doors #10”

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