Poems and Phantasms

Posts tagged ‘reflection’


Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons


Looking through internal bus window reflections

trees falling away, the highway catches up, reverie

drawn to a single stump in a tall grove

abruptly I am arrived, uprooted from musings on whether my side table

because stranger things have happened

could be made from that displaced tree and then

aren’t we all connected in a vast network of unseen coincidences

lonely me and lonely tree


Standing in a tomb in Egypt

itchy sweaty coconut sunscreened cipro-hazy college class becomes suddenly

the newest audience of mirrors casting

sunlight in dark tunnels, it cannot be

thousands of years since

my feet where the artist stood

my body memory enacting the brushstrokes

and I am with the hieroglyphics still

as if they were my own


Taking the pearl earrings from her shaky hands

because no one else wants them and she will be dying in a couple of days

white hair, white sheets, white pearls

if I mention the snow outside I can bring in the brown and gray of parking lot slush

there I sat, with in-laws soon to be out once the papers are signed

her own daughter hasn’t talked to her in forty years of widowhood

and we both know these fake pearl earrings are

all I’ll have to remember her by

but I will



Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons)


I thought I could leave him

behind. Even the times I came back

I thought I had a choice


And I did. Like an animal in a trap

biting off its own paws…

I left


Behind shadows, still

I see him. In new timelines

deeper than fear, I feel him

in my body involuntarily

twitching, teeth  locking, shoulders

guarding. Hollow eyes

empty of illusions


Wearing new masks for new

people, new audiences

for the pretense

that this all will

be okay


For the kids

echo him now

blaming me for it, me

for being strong enough to leave, me

who gave up



Mirroring my pain, voices yearning

for love that could not ever

be enough to fix

a broken reflection

of mercurial walls


But I will be

enough. I have

to begin anew,

woman in the looking glass.


Silver in my hair and

reticence in my eyes and

limping, I am leaving

more behind

each tomorrow


“Vanitas” Michael Conrad Hirt, circa 1630 (Public Domain)


Fossilized footprints, books

Placing my self inside another’s imprints

Close enough to touch the marks

the writer left

in time


Connect with creature through created

One-way mirror, darkened back

One either sees

or is



From the forests, page by page

The words are thrown into the sea

Wanderers find that they were seeking

kinship bottled, opened



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