[Young lady with-crossed arms, Tamara-de-Lempicka, 1939]
Then light seeped to her corner
reaching riverine fingers, folding thin
into her skirt, spilling labyrinthine onto shoes.
Her eyes hung open, liddy and weighted.
What she saw from her worn stool–
bone-curved, before the window–
was everything to the front and sides:
window sill stable below an arch of wood,
double glass multiplying light.
Her rounded spine saw the tilting bookcase
knew every thumb-smeared page,
saw the ovoid table, its dark legs
a bouquet of wood slats. Saw a clay mug of cold
coffee making another circle, white, on dried veneer,
saw the pillow deflated to the size of a head,
sheets holding angles from a slow pushing leg
parted to the wall, sheets hunched as the dreams
she left for the gentle importunate probe
of light exercising its right to her body.
Come back to your place on the stool.
You have been here before, hunched, folded
hands resigned to each drift of light.
There is nothing to do
but lean your gaze
in a constant stream,