Spring 1992 • Vol. XIV No. 2 PoetryApril 1, 1992 |

A Trick of the Eye

I have no imagination but what I steal.  I think of it when I walk past the strangely fashioned chair  in the furniture store window, whose back is shaped and painted  like a shocking red poppy, its green stem upright  where the spine might press back, its black heart where the shoulders would yield— how the painted chair looks best behind shop glass,  how I want that shapeliness myself, with small brushes and held breath,  how my shaky hand fails the design, my inventions and patterns  only incomplete hieroglyphs, how surprised I am, just the same.  Someone else can always do it better. Against the sharp spring air,  a line of chairs waits outside the auction house, blond wood and broken rush seats.  If I watched here for long they would be gone, taken home  to be apprehended newly by someone with paint and a makeup brush to capture the small detail.  And then what would I do? I would not recognize them again.  But somewhere in a

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Ann Townsend is the author of Dime Store Erotics and The Coronary Garden (poems) and editor of Radiant Lyre: Essays on Lyric Poetry (with David Baker). She directs the creative writing program at Denison University and is a founding member of VIDA: Women in Literary Arts.

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Dime Store Erotics

By Ann Townsend

I have no imagination but what I steal.  I think of it when I walk past the strangely fashioned chair  in the furniture store window, whose back is shaped and […]

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