Photograph of a Lady, 1924

In a previous empire, those satins
Trailed like clouds along with the every step
Of quiet women.

The slightest movement was placed
Like one’s cup perfectly on its saucer
Almost without incident,

And the sound of it was porcelain,
So that one fine note in the act
Kept its safe secret.

Legs folded over when taking one’s seat
Like an aphorism, so that what was left
Unsaid remained entirely unsaid.

The intent without action finely dovetailed
With one pose, so that turning to the artist,
A face was enigma;

So that now, observing the retrospect
One cannot but consider the left-unconsidered
In chiaroscuro.


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