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by Barbara Eve

About suffering they were never wrong,
The Old Masters


She gazes at the child on her lap
or stares off to one side
at some blur on the horizon,
not a wrinkle on her brow
spoiling the perfect egg-
shape of her face.

They always failed
to add the blood spot
in the white of one eye,
the sag of a breast,
worry lines tugging
at the bow mouth.

So easy for them to miss
these little imperfections,
not knowing the stretch
of skin like thinly rolled dough,
grind of muscle twisting
out the freshly crowned head,
the ache of nipples newly drained.


Barbara Eve will be the featured poet in our next issue. Her poems have appeared in Antaeus and have been included in the anthology Eating the Menu. (Spring 1975)

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