War Paint

file000608292008you could trace her travels around that house and yard
by a trail of lipstick-ringed cigarette butts and lost Bics ~

she’d painted a deep red outline with a slender brush
and tenderly she colored inside the lines with a lighter rose,
licking and pouting as she examined her artwork, the bright
bathroom light illuminating the central silky plumpness of
those two perfectly arched wings, reminiscent of the airline
logo of her once-upon-a-time employer . . .

Bon jour, Monsieur!
hair tossed, a provocative shoulder shrug

testing a flirt on no one in particular, aching for the days
when she didn’t need make-up to dare the whole world,
the days when her only war paint was her juicy raw youth

© 2013, poem, Jamie Dedes, All rights reserved; Illustration ~ courtesy of morgueFile

the glass moon

file9781336412046have you noticed the many qualities of the night,
the way it can inspire a sudden sense of fantasy,
coming on to you like a dandy, cheeky and strutting

it temps you to pluck its gaudy sequins and string
them into garland or maybe take its hand to skate
across the glass moon or to twirl on the lunatic edge
and the cusp of intuition: oh! the depth of knowing . . .

beauty in night winds leaves you breathless; and have you
seen how quiet meditations on midnight hues illuminate
the book of your life like the bright gold and jewel colors of
a medieval manuscript, moving you page by page

with the same fluid arabesque as a dancer or the sweet
heat of a lover’s fingers sketching secrets on your
heart and sharing messages like old souls tend to do;
then, in a sudden burst of starlight, you understand

your story, your sunburned days, your hours steeped in
night’s startling visions when the questions are answered
and you know why: why the glass moon is sky crazy,
why the distant stars are radiant, and why you are you

© 2014 poem, Jamie Dedes, All rights reserved; photograph courtesy of morgueFile