after Ingres’ Comtesse d’Haussonville
The face of all the world is changed, I think,
each pleat and ruffle smoothed into eternity. I’m face-
to-face with your icy blue threads. Your nape mirrored
above the hearth gravels my sang-froid. Let’s face it,
this triple façade of royal flesh stains my virtue,
pops my easel. Tuck your hand under your foxy face,
Louise, like Pablo’s women will. He’ll face the music:
they’ll deface him, call him a fly-by-night freak,
a pop-art shark. Your scherzo turned me on—me, face-
à-face with your Chopinesque hands, my touch ab-
staining. Be my George Sand, face-lift Louise
to Louis! Wear sheer silk next time. Or garb effaced.
Now no long face. Pop that comb in your hair,
face me. Place the Sèvres vase closer to the chair.
By Judith Terzi
(First line by Elizabeth Barrett Browning)
Judith Terzi holds an M.A. in French Literature and taught French at Polytechnic School for many years. She is the author of several chapbooks including Sharing Tabouli. Her poems have been nominated for Best of the Net and Web and have garnered prizes and honorable mentions. Recent poetry has appeared or is forthcoming in Malala: Future Cycle Press Anthology; Myrrh, Mothwing, Smoke: Erotic Poems (Tupelo Press, 2013); Times They Were A-Changing: Women Remember the 60s & 70s (She Writes Press, 2013); and Trivia: Voices of Feminism. A new chapbook, Ghazal for a Chambermaid, is forthcoming from Finishing Line Press. “You Rock Me Sonnenizio” first appeared in RiverLit.
Image is a partial of Pablo Picasso’s Girl Before the Mirror (1932).