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She has a secret rarely discovered
this insertion of quotations without acknowledgement

as if she invented them fresh this season,
associations tumble over in my washing machine head
as I recall her salon, the walls museum-like
with tasteful paintings and tapestries,
on low tables, cherry wood desks, piles of
leather bound minds, each with finger-slips of paper
marking pages of future lines and stanzas


I had a psychologist, a Moroccan Jew with black
polished pointed shoes and fake diplomas
whose eyes glinted like scalpels dissecting you.
Did you pull off insect’s wings as a child,
he once asked me, peering stealthy
into my very soul


Shame sits like a dismembered carcass
on my sheet as I deny his polished shoes,
her cultured pretensions, my forged diplomas

We’re all plagiarists, perverts, forgers
--collectors of beautiful things

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© Johnmichael Simon



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