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ROSAMUND STANFORD
close to the bone

too close to the bone
that's the reason
the reason why
the reason for
the reason if
the reason and
the reason that the flatness
it's the reason for the flatness
and for the concentric circles
the unbearably concentric circles
and the pride the pretending pride
that never relents never reveals the crestfallen
eye the crestfallen mouth
the bitter under the stretchedout smile
the held breathe of warm flooding loss
the quivering inside the locked jaw
the betrayal in the bones

like this i can't live like this
yet i do
i can't live so tightly and so sprightly, yet i do
i can't live so roughly and so toughly, but i am
go on i can't go on, and on and on and on
treading and trodding, all those legs
and legs and legs and legs
and pantyhoses and underpanties
and panting pansies
and prettiness with curvy lipstick
parenthesis of coyness in smiling
and small sanitary fishponds carping with koi
and used-up water filters, clogged
with black stuff like snuff
and used up ozone, seethrough skyholes
worn out, my favourite soft old shirt
worn through from plain old wear and tear
simple aging

here inside my own house and my own bones
simple shrinking, and bending like an old tree
or a fencepole that's got grey and knotted
and wire uncurling
hair floating to the ground, to the floor
wafting off
wearing out
wear and tear
here and there