42 Mirrors

by Lucien Quincy Senna

42 Mirrors
By Lucien Quincy Senna

Mirror, mirror
tell me all,
Who I am
Who I was,
painted seagreen with vanity
or socketed modesty.
Pride and pain
my old pretenders.

I am full of dead men's bones,
their advance over me.
I trashed and trotted
other people's causes, 
statecraft of the most
sinister skull-duggery.

Mirror, mirror
see me now,
my strawberry leaves
for I am no longer twenty-four.
Pinking the raw edge of silk,
trusting it all. 
Then that Ramshackle Empire
came clattering for me
a penal code
institutions for troubled women
"Pull your bellies between your knees!" said the nurse.

The hours pass upon the eastern turn
my faith anew while I was interred there,
until I somersaulted 
out of the deep waters.
An ocean greyhound
who was simply considered
a whited sepulchre.
A mask for women over forty.