John Tansey (June 4th,1961...Gemini / Bronx, New York)
To a debutante on her eightiegth birthday...
Now old, joints arthritic,
Skin callused and sagging
Like weathered eaves, dirty
Finger nails bitten and broken.
The loud parties are over,
But the wine stays with me
And the hangovers linger
Longer than the sweetened memories
A stroke has left my right side numb
The muscke spasms and involuntary shaking
these nerve ending earthquakes
shatter what’s left of my body
From the classic, choreographed grace
Of a young society girl,
Her hand, enticing a younger man
To kiss me when I wore a prettier face
Now, shamelessly, wearing clothes
I am too old for.
Walking into the bathroom,
I face the mirror.
And what remains.
Fumbling with my makeup,
I pick up a razor, and, slicing
my finger, unaware,
apply its ruby red gloss to my lips.
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