Winter 2003 • Vol. XXV No. 1 PoetryJanuary 1, 2003 |

Trompe l’Oeil

All over Genoa you see them: windows with open shutters. Then the illusion shatters. But that's not true. You knew the shutters were merely painted on. You knew it time and again. The claim of the painted shutter that it ever shuts the eye of the window is an open lie. You find its shadow-latches strike the wall at a single angle, the stuck hands of a clock. Who needs to be correct more often than twice a day? Who needs real shadow more than play? Inside the house, a supply of endless laundry to wash. On an outer wall it's fresh paint hung out to dry— shirttails flapping on a frieze unruffled by any breeze, like the words pinned to this line. And the foreign word is a lie: that second l in l'oeil which only looks like an l, and is silent.

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All over Genoa you see them: windows with open shutters. Then the illusion shatters. But that's not true. You knew the shutters were merely painted on. You knew it time […]

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