The Image on the Mirror

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Sit. Feast on your life.
–From “Love After Love,” Derek Walcott

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casuga-image-on-the-mirrorAlthough this invitation will prolong our wait
in the cold antechambers that we surround
ourselves with, we will cautiously accept it.

Why not? Sitting here, staring at a kaleidoscope
of the many faces we have constructed to meet
other faces, I celebrate a love affair with myself.

Who else will do that for me? There were lovers,
and there were lovers, but they held on to their
own chisels to pare and scrape their own image

of what they could have and hold not unlike
a wild-eyed Pygmalion sculpting flesh onto his one
desire, a Galatea of his rawest wants and dreams.

I will sit and wait for the feast of all feasts
to be served on my table, my head on a platter,
my heart seasoning a bowl of hope, a soupçon

of little mercies that lovers often do: a salving
of hurts, a troth of endless fealty, a promise
that the image on the mirror is finally, only mine.

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