“Trompe L’Oeil” and other poems by Patricia Walsh

Trompe L’Oeil

Tidied away, fast disappeared,
what’s lost in the house isn’t lost.
In a mid-sentence, blasting myths and fairytales
I avoid the radiance of your eye.

Hidden phallic symbols litter the test
crunchy fallen leaves subdue the table
reference books stand-offish, yet useful
the clock, used to stares, reigns supreme.

What escaped thought becomes you?
What line unwritten begs attention?
The trompe l’oeil of art crumbles
a piece of fiction no longer necessary.

It would do well to save ink and rest,
watch Love/Hate till my eyeballs dissolve,
or the TV licence man catches me. Anyway
smartphones, smart bombs pave the way.

Eyeball to eyeball, keeping in check
a double decker bus is crashing into me,
foolproof suicide, if you stand next to me,
always having money to keep me sweet.

Stuck in the village. You’re lost, after all.
Winding through people, an avoidance strategy,
cold calling my fantasies, standing aloof
no eye contact can remedy this.

Citrus Refresh

Bruised flesh, eaten by spinsters’ cries
calling for regional order.
Sated for now, tomorrow might never arrive.

No one spies without a purpose
fearing for their own safety, paramount
twitching the lens to a heart’s craving.

The scented candle reverberates with intent
for one’s own good, uncomfortable as it is
being beaten or insulted is still normal.

Choosing select friends for me,
the more mature, the better, despite age.
Sinking apples instead of sweets is approved.

Identical dress, though hips not developed
the smallest size bra fits to a tee
knowledge of a curricular activity is key.

Associating with local heroes
falls flat, due to a lack of interest
I am not part of this charade, as ever.

Waiting for this mess to subside,
my own freedom answering to itself
scandal contained in pint glasses and pizza.

Not caring for silent soldiers, speed bumps as such
fattening lectures from betters all the time
scented with envy, cries from another pillow.

Skin on Skin

It rubs me up the wrong way,
this intermittent friction, hard graft
producing nothing, save hard-won tears.

Woken up by solid cold extension,
I slowly realise things could be better,
divorcing circumstance from comfortable creatures.

I am not amused, or inspired
to catch a structure of yours in my arms
embracing a lifestyle already broken.

Outlining separation procedures close to hand
never realising this could be the end
waking up to hubris, fashion condemned.

Bloody finale, a pregnant conclusion
signs away your status, folding a future
declarations of convenience finish the task.

You lie down, beyond reproach, not seen again
until the Armageddon proves you right,
living in pockets too rich to bother you.

They croon in time to your desecration
anal therapy, skin on skin not above their station
serving them right, suburban whores.

Open Wound

A cooked nerve, gaping at nothing
in particular, festers at will.
Suppurates on demand, a carving of a foot
a thorny lesson in kitten heels.

Bespoke man-shoes don’t avoid the issue,
mashed with sticking plaster for some hours
blood, on occasion, washes out the gunk
a moist challenge in another’s footwear.

Dancing in time to excruciating pain,
I can only offer up so much misery
at a time, suffering has its limits
caught in the heel, pouring out its filth.

It will pass, I know. Avoiding gangrene is good,
blood poisoning is the only comfort I know,
respecting my privacy over all other causes
not yelping at will, suffering under umbrage.

Using my head for something, besides bright fantasy,
pick off the scabs on its final journey,
some satisfaction on its ultimate trip
a limit to endurance, a finite walk.

Fine Feathers Do Not Make Fine Birds

By foul means or otherwise, I stake my claim
on a grandmother’s cast-offs
clearing slides, fastening hair, prettified.

Not so much rebellion as assertion
a desired scenario always in my head,
a disco for one person, but where’s the joy in that?

Is my eyeshadow too obvious?
Does this hair cream scream usage?
Or is this lipstick too red for your liking?

Puberty drags its heels, so do I,
take up the slack with cosmetics to go
pound shop treats accumulated on the sly.

My friends can’t figure me out.
Innocence eroding away, but not quite,
doll-faced presentations still ringing true.

Invisible curfews taken as read
cut and dried regulations rest weary heads
a maturity missed, a freedom curtailed.

Trompe L’Oeil and other poems are © Patricia Walsh, Patricia Walsh image © Linda Ibbotson

Image © Linda Ibbotson
Image Linda Ibbotson

Patricia Walsh was born in Mourneabbey, Co Cork, Ireland. She was educated in University College Cork, graduating with an MA in Archaeology in 2000. Previously she has published one collection of poetry, titled Continuity Errors (Lapwing Press, 2010) Her poetry is published in The Fractured Nuance; Revival Magazine; Ink Sweat and Tears; Drunk Monkeys; Hesterglock Press; Linnet’s Wing, Narrator International, and The Evening Echo, a local Cork newspaper with a wide circulation. She was the featured artist for June 2015 in the Rain Party Disaster Journal. In addition, She has also published a novel, titled The Quest for Lost Eire, in 2014.

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