Friday 9 June 2023

Five Poems by Fabrice Poussin

 



Beauty Masks

 

Beloved child she stumbled on a limelight stage

wearing heels made for a mother

cheered on by strange adults with fancy cameras

she pursed lips in what she thought a smile.

 

Frail legs swayed with newly found pain

hoses, mascara, and other devices

prescribed by an ambitious manager

she is six, might as well be twenty.

 

She travelled many ages and numerous cities

on luxury transport and first line air

sniffing caviar, Havana's, and cocaine

forms preserved by chemicals and a little touch up.

 

She recalls those days when it felt so good

to show angular curves bathed in two pieces

of thousand-dollar fabrics per inch

before the party to celebrate her twenties.

 

A monument now she feels nothing

under the artificial layers tailored for a future

walking to cheer on her replacements

so artificial the mirror reflects a stranger.

 

It has been many visits to the sterile rooms

under bright lights again and silent walls

as she tried to recover a youth not her own

and succeeded so in looking like another’s ghost.

 


Script 2021

 

They fancy another story

true to life or fairly close

ready as always to pack it in

rooms of thousands to bursting coffers.

 

Greed in those squints

glaring at the deserted horizon

how to delight in this darkness

a dream of Madame Tussaud’s.

 

If only the rains could drain

every particle of this misery

return the giggles upon the fields

and the sighs of lonely lovers.

 

But the stage is set in waiting

while they watch from their towers

feasting on your raging tragedies

hyenas in hiding they laugh.

 

While in my bosom she dies

lost in her youthful curls

my sun unforgettable

her heart caught in an evil embrace.

 


Sign of Being

 

I saw his fingers move in the breeze

inflexible reeds in a dying storm.

 

They hovered expecting a final gasp

eager to feast on the sorrow they needed.

 

A crowd gathered in invisible forms

boasting the dark hues of deep mourning.

 

Spectators they knew a show of grief to be their due

a sixty second flash of vicarious loss.

 

Hoping for a tremor and a sonorous groan

they seemed to grow impatient with whispers.

 

What if it was yet another trick he played

on the human neighbours eager for a spectacle?

 

His toes twitched gleefully beneath the covers

a makeshift shroud made of precious silk.

 

He was not quite ready to journey on,

disappointed the growing herds.

 

Soon it would be time to return home

sombre as they were there was no reason to cry.

 

I saw his fingers move and rejoiced at the hours

this man I never knew still cared to carry on.

 


True Believers

 

Sunday funnies are little compared to

the actors so well-rehearsed of

the long aisles to a dark altar.

 

The night before they drank on the gambling floor

hidden by neon colours and unlikely covers

home so late their eyelids still droop.

 

In suits fancier than on their wedding moments

meant to knock them dead on interview day

they seem strangers to themselves for an hour or so.

 

Mouthing words to century songs

their stomach scream for a break

soon lunch with temporary friends of the cross.

 

The dark armour and tie weigh heavy on the soul

as the summer dress is too tight on the breast

they cannot wait to shed what they call truth.

 

When the sun rises again, it will be an office

and memories of a sabbat well spent

while the giant screen screamed touchdown again.

 

For a moment they believed, and they swore

for another they almost were certain

that they gave the appearance of sincerity.

 

Shells for five days, hollow for the nights

sixty minutes of the week fixes all they claim

while corpses rot on the path to their redemption.

 


What if?

 

Leaning upon the crannied wall of the castle

he observes the stranger who crosses the bridge

light as air in her long summer dress.

and he wonders what if?

 

Fearful to approach this lady above the clouds

might he once even dare utter her name

as she continues her noble steps

unaware of the eyes attached to her motion.

 

But what if she knew of him all along

and dreamed as he did of a few stolen moments

under the watchful eye of the guards

engaged to spread rumours and crush children’s fantasies.

 

Perhaps he should scream her name

see it carried with a gentle breeze

to deposit a light kiss on her crimson cheek

perhaps then she would turn to him and smile.




Fabrice Poussin - Poussin is a professor of French and English. His work in poetry and photography has appeared in Kestrel, Symposium, The Chimes, and hundreds of other publications worldwide. Most recently, his collections “In Absentia,” and “If I Had a Gun,” were published in 2021 and 2022 by Silver Bow Publishing. 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 


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