by Charity Changa


I've seen you with your laden brush hatching away at
canvas until it gives in. You wield it like a knife these days in
nineteen seventy-two. Amid blossoms riotous, bright,
ripe in the light pouring through your slatted straw hat
you're spreading variegated leaves wide in the sun.
Today I see you hiding, pulling that hat lower over your eyes
to cover the fringe that covers the scar running from your
brow to ear.

Pyrotechnics and phone booths suit you too I see - you're well
travelled, drawing Moroccan damsels wrapped in white
amid creaking, peeling whitewashed colonnades.
They stand always framed -- the women on the windowed trains
with their fur coats, kohl lined eyes. So too they
in the booths - phoning, talking to invisible friends,

tormentors, to children. But we always return to the foliage
- green and blood red, juicy flowers
pushing their heads towards your hips, dusting you with
pollen, branding you fertile in a terrifying, new way.


Colleen Browning has stated that she prefers
to be called CB rather than Ms or Mrs.


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