re: visions of beauty

thin woman drowning

worn to white angles
                      shoulder wreck & thrust neck swanned off
                                                         a figurehead set
                                                                         to sail our abstinences
                                                                                dredged up w/ uncoiling weedy hair
                                                                                       watery trails as the found body
                                                                                              lily ghosting ophelia flung
the allure of hooked frailty
                                      addiction seized her bones
                                                                       our heroine's in a lazy romance
                                                                                 hand curved at birdy throat
                                                                                                 her ascending gaze
oh will he
             oh willowy & insect limbed me
                                                   forgive me I have fallen in
                                                                                         to what?
                                                                                                     empty see
                                                                                                     excluding light
                                                                                         these clothes are of no matter
                                                                                         it is how the bones show

oh fling ophelia to the fish to swell wash up & wrinkle on the beach



woman half naked in denim

oh come cock camera look
the flinch mob out there declares me hard to swallow
my parched white hair's aghast
& my twiggy throat attends the noose

come kiss me cause this fabrics slackening
my bones & tendons screw the loose neck
skull to clavicle hollow sung sound seems
my sack naked me's slipt the knot

oh how the skirt swung
from the scaffold
a giant patchwork lampshade billowed me from the waist down i sleep
and dream a wild west of reminiscences
of bonnetted and feisty women that dust the land w/ rolled up sleeves and scoured faces
ah but this crotchety old bird speaks

these are my working seams
my body's mine of trenches
tricklings rivulets & scar run
a blood sung racket down there

cart her off to some house for invisibles
away from the lusty crowd they cry

but as these stubborn arms cross my death breast
i wave from the black flag
sweet & irredeemable


woman framed in butstle

here is the cold shoulder ice spine skin spun smooth as moon

(milk-skinned pink where the elastic of
her waistband presses bothersome
indentations sticky tights stifled &
nagging at her belly w/ synthetic gossip
the seams crawl between her legs)

here is the hair as gold appeared smooth impeccable shine & impervious to

(armour-plated her head gleamed
a beetles back brittle scab.
burnt & toxic
the odour in her throat.)

here the hooded lid of lust
a lashed eye peeping up alluring

(her crusty lashes stung & pricked
the softs of her eyes dry
& if she blinked tears blistered up &
blurted all to wreckage)

& here the nose that does not hook
plummet or lean but is as a kittens

(often it is raw w/ excessive sniffing)

here's the full lipped mouth
a flaunted glowering budslick

(w/ rumours of toothpaste, sick w/

& here the caged arse     for the bird can be kept

(close-up the stony coquette sweats
the lights are hot and the camera eager to collect.
something once fruity and sweet trails around her
& the face on her skin feels heavy
when she touches her cheek she can not
remember how she felt when she was 7 or 10.
she has belly ache from the pinch
of the tights making her breathless.
she is closed in
& everyone knows


addressing angels

the skin of yr skin doesn't belong
not this swelling belly & shifting tits
how you curve & beckon from hips
down to bare toes
yr true bare toes
yr true bare arms
and at yr waist
the body that is not begins
to pray & vanishes into the very fabric
you look on
trying to fathom the naked replica of a torso
that is this much of you

they have made you
stand w. innocent hair curling in bunches
eyes cast down
naked toes on the wooden floor
and beside you another aspect
that may or may not be
you sat cross-legged on the bench
a butterfly
hips knees shoulders bunches of curls
make wings of yr body
and at yr back
the angel prays
shoulder blades fired white

it is a dream of a body
that we must pretend

i noticed you left two damp footprints
& where you'd sat on the bench was warm

my hands are littered w/ silver scales
i heard yr skin whispering beneath my fingers
w/ such soft hair that mustn't be touched
talcum & cocoa butter come away from you
slim evidences on chairs & in empty rooms

            Dianne Darby 2005