Issue 167, Fall 2003
Je suis devant ce paysage féminin
comme une branche dans le feu.
I stand before this landscape at dusk
jacklighted, caught in the high beams,
shocked into stillness, rapt, incapable
of flight before the evening's radiance.
I stand in front of everything I've done
knowing what happens if I don't move—
a horn blows, and I rush across the street.
In front of everyone I have ever loved
and lied to, I stand, the scorpion I am,
pinned to my shadow, on display,
like an insect still screaming its case
in amber, in a collection of private griefs
hereby assembled, dusted and labeled
by specialists who isolate each flaw