Philip Rosenthal © 2009 All Rights Reserved
He divided her into eight equal parts
as any artist would, into architecture
and scale. Everything grew from the face,
descended into a pattern of pores.
He spent an hour in yellow, stirring
her eyelids into fire-consciousness.
He wanted to make her see something
outside the picture or beyond
his grey cracked window, hazardously
painted shut. He studied her, surfaced
the drowned anxieties of her skin,
the infant wrinkles. When she spoke
he could feel the image slip
from its solid monument
into division and when her voice
stopped he could assemble the pieces
again, the way a man would see her
without ever knowing her, as if beauty
was a need he could make.
Donna Lewis Cowan attended the MFA Creative Writing program at George Mason University and currently lives in Falls Church, Virginia. Her poetry most recently appeared in the Worcester Review and Fickle Muses.
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