For Gregory, Chuck & John by Laurel Blossom
Not like skin cloddishly dripping off the bone Of the A-bomb victim or the unrecognizable man Who’s lost too much weight too fast; Not like the prow of a woman’s face in the wind, Wrinkles splayed back to the blue-black hairline, Mouth clamped in a facelift’s ferocious grin; But so gradual, so slow, so long a degradation The skin had time to scale itself down To thin, to adjust To the daylight shining through the petals Of the white peonies in the bedroom. They were so beautiful, diaphanous as chiffon. One day a breeze came up in the conversation. We turned to speak of it, but they were gone. From The Paper Said: Poems by Laurel Blossom, Greenhouse Review Press, 2001. Reprinted with permission. All rights reserved.