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View from a Box

Louisa Spaventa

Lid lifts this puckered box's velvet depths.

My shoulders wombed, my nose pressing red plush.

Necklace beads portholing a vision of musk

and smoke. And women outnumbered by breasts.

The dressing room den fills with second-bests

strung in tinseled shorts: eyes holding up dusk,

ladies in waiting to peel off their husks.

Powder for faces, for noses and chests.

They lift sleeping bosoms into sequined

saddles and pull the reigns on grinding teeth.

The ladies inhale and blow out a mist;

the door creaks open. One is to ascend

flimsy steps with flimsier hopes underneath.

I rustle and bead and blow them a wish.

Louisa Spaventa

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