Thursday, December 20, 2012
out of the lace
The Only Portrait of Emily Dickinson
by Irene McKinney
The straight neck held up out of the lace
is bound with a black velvet band.
She holds her mouth the way she chooses,
The full underlip constrained by a small muscle.
She doesn't blink or look aside,
although her left eye is considering
a slant. She would smile
if she had time, but right now
there is composure to be invented.
She stares at the photographer.
The black crepe settles. Emerging
from the sleeve, a shapely hand
holds out a white, translucent blossom.
"They always say things which embarrass
my dog," she tells the photographer.
She is amused, but not as much as he'd like.
photo: grape-leaf anemone