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To a Former Beauty


ISSUE:  Spring 2013

You flared across Boston
like a meteor, blond mane and lowered brow
in every coffeehouse off the Charles.
I could tell your conquests

by their cancerous looks.
You were a Cato among novelists,
breaking a man’s will because you could.
The glazes of the river stood in warning.

Now the wrinkles gather like suitors
along your lips, and there’s a mothy flutter
beneath your left eye. Ah,
and that pressed-dough face, which once,

once, might have launched a thousand
slips of the tongue.

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